Vincy Workplace
October 5, 2007

Six sure-fire ways to sabotage your career

Have you ever thought you might be unconsciously sabotaging your own career? Maybe you should stop and think about it . . .

Do you consciously pay attention to how you conduct yourself on the job? Do you look for ways to improve your performance? Do you greet customers and coworkers with a real smile and some truly felt words? Or, are you just going through the motions-getting up, going to work, doing the job, coming home . . . day in and day out?{{more}} If work is just a paycheck, chances are you are already skating on thin ice.

Here are six ways you could be sabotaging your career without even knowing it.

1. Creating your own flextime policy. We all wish we could just work intensely for a few short hours whenever we want to, and then go home; but, some people really do abuse company time. Do you come in late, leave early, extend breaks, and/or take long lunches? Your colleagues are watching, so be fair and stick to your assigned work hours unless you make prior arrangements with your supervisor or manager.

2. Daydreaming. Yes, it’s important to dream big and think big to get your career moving forward. And, sure, you can learn by surfing the Internet. You also need to maintain your social circles by calling friends and visiting coworkers at their desks. But none of these tasks will set you up for job success or a promotion. Stay focused on work-related tasks when you’re at work, and get your job done.

3. Failing to blow your own horn. Learn the differences between boasting and promoting yourself. Boasting is simply bringing up your achievements in an unprofessional, unflattering, and often cruel way; self-promoting is taking advantage of an opportunity to make others aware of your capabilities and skills in a justifiable, professional manner. If you keep quiet hoping someone else will speak up for you, you may find yourself waiting for quite a while.

4. Using company resources for personal use. If your company can’t trust you not to go shopping in the supply closet for your children’s back-to-school needs, how on earth can you expect them to trust you with the company credit card or car?

5. Sticking with cliques. Do you go to lunch with the same people every day? Do you find that you never associate with some people in your office? If so, you could be part of a clique. Take time to know the people in your office-you never know who will get promoted internally or who will leave and move up “the outside ladder.” Keep your options open by mixing in with different people, at different levels, both internally and externally.

6. Refusing to keep your skills current. New approaches to doing business arise daily these days. Are you current? Stay abreast of what’s happening in your industry; know the latest trends, creative approaches to problem solving, and who the movers and shakers are-not just locally but regionally and internationally, as well. You may still enjoy face-to-face meetings but if your clients want or need to do webinars or teleseminars, you should know the technology. You’d better adjust quickly!

Karen Hinds President/CEO – Workplace Success Group,
Toll Free: 1-877-902-2775; Tel: 1-203-757-4103
Creator of The Workplace Success Program (TM)