How To Develop and Practice Positive Work Habits

Satisfied employee

Every workplace has them--the people that make it look easy. They are liked by coworkers as well as management. Promotions and raises naturally come their way. What is their secret?  If you want to be that kind of employee, there are a few things that you can do to develop and practice positive work habits:

    1. Identify the traits that you want to foster. Take a good look at your current strengths and weaknesses--and be honest with yourself. Everyone has room for improvement and the first step toward making changes is deciding what you want to work on.
    2. Put yourself in the shoes of your boss. Try to be the employee that you'd want to have!
    3. Be there--on time, all the time. Attendance matters, so do what's necessary to be sure that you are viewed as reliable. Set an alarm and leave a little early; be at work, ready to work, before your scheduled starting time. Not only does running in the door at the last minute leave you feeling rushed and overwhelmed, it looks really bad to your boss, too.
    4. Be a team player. Help your coworkers when you can. Don't worry too much about getting the credit--people notice who "gets things done."
    5. Teach others what you know. Encourage and celebrate coworker success. Fostering a supportive environment is good for everyone!
    6. Stay organized and meet deadlines. When you have a project due, pace your work so that you meet your deadline without compromising quality. Use a date-book, if necessary.
    7. Be an optimist. Everyone prefers the company of upbeat, positive people.
    8. Stay "in the loop" socially at work, but never engage in gossip or other negative talk about bosses or coworkers. Always maintain a professional demeanor.
    9. Take care of yourself. Eat a healthy diet and get sufficient rest. Maintain a reasonable schedule when you know that you have to work the next day. Sleep deprivation reduces productivity.
    10. Find balance. Try to give extra to your job when you can, but make time to engage in non-work-related hobbies and interests. Taking time to relax, unwind and recharge will allow you to avoid burnout.
    11. If you manage others, try to do so by using positive reinforcement. Everyone responds better to encouragement than to degradation.
    12. Ethics matter. When you are at work, you are not only representing yourself, but your company, as well. A company's reputation depends greatly on the behavior of its employees. Behave as though your mother is watching!


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