Friday, July 19, 2013

The 10 Biggest Goofs Made By New Workers

On your first day of a new job you’re often excited and nervous. But after a few weeks, you start to settle in and feel more comfortable with your colleagues and the work.
But if you’re not careful, you could find yourself unknowingly making the kind of mistakes that will not only bug your co-workers and boss, but prompt them to label you as “annoying,” “clueless” or “worthless.”
If you want to avoid such monikers, consider these top 10 mistakes often made by newbies:
1. Saying “I know” too much.
You were hired for the job because the employer believes you to be intelligent enough to do it. But that doesn’t mean your colleagues want to hear a smug “I know” or an eye-rolling, “I know” while they’re trying to offer helpful advice. When advice is offered, offer a simple “thank you.”  If it is advice that has been offered before and you’re getting sick of hearing it, you can always say something like, “Thanks for the advice. Todd and Bridget mentioned the same thing so I can see this is an important issue.”
2. Dishing the dirt.
Even if you think it’s harmless gossip such as, “Did you see what Kim Kardashian wore the other day? Horrible!” you don’t want to give even a hint that you might be a gossip. While office politics and gossiping are part of any workplace, in the early days you’ve got to be careful not to give anyone any ammunition to use against you. When the new boss asks a colleague how you’re doing, you want the colleague to mention how you’re focused on work – not the latest issue of “People” or the fact that you gossip with another colleague during your break.
3. Failing to acknowledge the top dogs.
In some circles, this is known as “kissing up.” But paying your respects to leaders and top performers is much more than that.  It means that you’ve done your research and are being respectful of their accomplishments. In other words, don’t meet the top performer and say “Hi” without also noting, “I know you spearheaded that big project for XYZ Corp. last year.  I look forward to watching and learning from you.”
4. Being rude with technology.
Yes, it’s true that everyone relies too much on their smartphone and spends too much time on Facebook at work. One day you may do the same. But in the first months of your job, don’t even send one text during your work hours or even think of checking Facebook. It’s a double standard to be sure, but you’ll be judged much more harshly in the beginning for such behavior. Explain to family and friends that you’ll be offline except during breaks so you’ll be less tempted to stray into behavior that will cause others to see you as immature and lazy.
5. Showing up with orange hair.
If you were hired with brown hair, that doesn’t mean you can show up with neon-colored hair three weeks into your new job. It’s also smart to avoid new visible tattoos, piercings or clothes that drastically change your look. Bosses can get very (read more here)
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