When it comes to the work environment, it is absolutely essential to have a good work ethic if you want to climb the ladder of success. What is a work ethic? Your work ethic is the beliefs and attitudes that you have towards both your work and your coworkers. Someone with a good work ethic will be valued above someone who doesn’t, and unless you plan to stay in the same dead end job forever, having a good work ethic will definitely benefit you.
Having a good work ethic will make you stand out from your coworkers and will likely give you more opportunities to get ahead. Here are some habits that you should form if you want to develop a good work ethic and show your employers that you are a valuable asset to them.
1. Always be on time.
I know it’s not always easy to be on time, especially with the Manila traffic, but it’s a really important habit to strive for. Being on time shows that you respect your employer and value your job. If your shift starts at 9am, plan to be there by 8:30AM. That way, if things go wrong and you end up running later than you’d hoped, you still have a little bit of leeway. Don’t take advantage of this leeway by stopping for a cup of coffee on the way, but use it to your benefit and be on time. Your employer will surely place more value on you than on a coworker who is late almost every day. If you really are going to be late and it can’t be avoided, call in. You owe your employer the respect to let them know if you are going to be late. Call before you are actually late, don’t wait until last minute. That way, if your employer has to adjust anything due to your tardiness, he has ample time to do so.
2. Keep your work area tidy.
While no one at work is going to care if your house is generally a mess, it looks really bad if your personal work space is a mess too. Make it a habit to keep your area neat, whether it’s a small desk or a large office. It’s just one small space to maintain, and it will make you look good. A messy space can distract both yourself and your coworkers, so everyone benefits by your staying tidy. Be diligent in cleaning up after yourself, especially if you have to use space that is shared with other employees. If you always leave a mess after your shift, people will notice and it will not be appreciated.
3. Be organized.
Being organized goes beyond the previously mentioned habit of keeping your area tidy. Being organized in your work likely goes beyond what your coworkers can actually see. Organize your work tasks; prioritize and decide what needs to be given the most time and importance. By doing so, you will be able to plan ahead and foresee what tasks will take up the most of your time. Being able to plan ahead will give you plenty of time to dedicate to bigger, more important tasks while still remembering about and keeping smaller jobs in check as well. By being organized, you will be more productive and your employer will take note.
4. Keep a positive attitude.
In nearly every job in the world, you will have to interact with other human beings, whether you like it or not. So, keeping a positive attitude once you’ve clocked in can go a long way. Even if things in your home life aren’t going so smoothly right now, you need to leave your personal problems at home. Don’t let them affect the way you perform at work, and always try to keep a positive perspective while you are at the office. Focus on the tasks at hand and let your personal issues fade into the background. Greet everyone with a smile; evidence actually supports the theory that smiling, even forcibly, makes a person happier. Your coworkers will get along with you much better and your employer will appreciate your positive attitude.
5. Try your best to be cooperative.
With so many different personalities, you’re bound to have at least one coworker that you don’t get along with that well. It’s no excuse to leave the positive attitude behind though; if anything it makes having it even more important. Both of you still have to do your work, so go out of your way to be cooperative with them as well as your other coworkers. You’re most likely going to have to work together with your fellow employees on certain projects and tasks, so do so with a willing attitude. Do your part and, if needed, help them to do theirs. Demonstrating a willingness to work with other people will be appreciated by your boss and will show him or her that you’ve got what it takes to get ahead.
6. Show initiative.
If you find that you’re all done with the tasks you were assigned for the day but you’ve still got time on the clock left, look for something else to do. Of course, you shouldn’t meddle with someone else’s job, but if there are tasks that you can do without causing any problems that weren’t necessarily on the list for today, show initiative and do them. Don’t always be waiting for someone to tell you what to do; by taking initiative you show that you are capable of working on your own without supervision and you demonstrate an important leadership skill. Even if it’s something as menial as filing an extra bit of paperwork, as long as you are not overstepping any boundaries, your boss will notice that you have a productive attitude and it will leave a good impression.
7. Put quality into your work.
Don’t be one of those people who just skate by, putting in the minimum required effort that they can get away with. Make sure that the work you to is high standard work. When you put effort into something, it will show in the results; and the opposite is true as well—if you don’t care enough about your work to do a good job, your employer is going to notice. So, teach yourself to care about your work. Go above and beyond the minimum requirements. Now, don’t allow quality to affect your time too though – quality work is great but if you’re only getting half your work done, that’s not so great. Find a balanced use of your time that allows you to produce the output needed, but with maximum quality.
Why is it so important to have a good work ethic? Well, if you were the boss and were looking to promote someone to fill a job opening, who would you choose? The person who puts little effort into their job, is always late, and who is disliked by most of their coworkers, or the person who shows up early, shows leadership abilities, and seems to actually put their heart into their work? It’s a clear choice, so be the person that you would choose!