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10 Bad Habits That Are Not Letting You Succeed @ Work

Updated on July 4, 2011

1. Improper Planning

Its not the lack of planning as most people think, it is the lack of 'proper' planning. I know a General Manager of a hotel who had his entire week planned, every hour was scheduled prior. That is improper planning. You just cannot decide ahead of time what will happen in the future and when you will deal with it.

What I mean is that you cannot decide when the fire will break out, but when it does, you will have to drop everything that you are doing or planned to do and attend to it. I think it is important to recognize that you cannot control every hour of your day. Have a list of things that you must accomplish and have an idea of how much time you might need to get them done.

Then when you have the requisite time (or break down the project into smaller tasks), start working on it task by task, in the manner that you had planned to do so.

A full calendar does not a planned day make.

2. Behaving like a 'Know it all' or worse 'God's Gift To The Company'

It probably sounds pseudo coming from someone who dispenses a lot of gyaan, but honestly I read, discuss, ask, learn, watch, master, try, fail, record, ideate a lot before I can even come up with something worthy of posting here.
I cannot fault you if you are good and if you know it. All of us are good at something and the sooner you realize what that is, the better. I do think, in a corporate environ, it becomes a tad irritating for want of another word to work with someone who keeps thinking, saying and behaving like he is the best thing ever to happen to the company. Someone like me, may even take it as a challenge to knock some sense into such a person.
By being a know - it - all you will only alienate people, nothing else. Let others acknowledge your potential, let others accept you as a 'go-to' expert, let others come to you and you will see your ideas getting readily accepted. Who knows, you may even win one of those 'employee of the year' awards.

3. Keeping Everything in Your Head

So you are intelligent, that does not mean you will not make any notes, keep any records, send any communique to your team members. What happens when you are not around, say on leave or god forbid unwell? Keeping a neat record of your activities, projects, files, contacts, clients etc, it is a good habit. You can easily share information and people do not need to keep wondering if what you are saying happened or not.

4. 'I Sent You A Mail' habit

I think emails should be used to record information, period. Ideate, clarify, talk, share, discuss, argue, fight, call each other names, blame others in person. There really is no substitute. Trying to record everything on an email so that when the time comes you can show proof, is proof enough you have already failed to make it to the team.

5. I, Me, Myself

I am huge fan of Ayn Rand, and truly believe one cannot make anyone else happy, if one isnt happy. You should come first, after all life values itself above all else. But why cant you find happiness in making someone else's day? What stops you from contributing for the fun of contribution and not the fame of recognition? If you let someone else succeed, it does not mean you wont. Abundance is the way to go, not scarcity. There is enough for everyone, but you have to be with everyone to know that.

6. Refusing to follow unwritten rules

Everything cannot be written or put into manuals! Remember the movie 'few good men?' Tom cruise asks the corporal on the stand whether 'where to eat' is in the book. The corporal looks at him and wonders if Tom is joking, but Tom is serious. Its not in the book, and yet, we all find out exactly where to eat, where to file our leave applications, where to find coffee and where to take a break without any induction or manual.
There are other unwritten rules too, protocol or company culture. Look out for it, watch it in practice and adapt. If it is something that does not sit right with you, talk to someone about it. Just believing it does not exist is the proverbial 'ostrich' approach to life.

7. Lack of Punctuality

It is one of the most irritating habits. If you ever work in a professional organization, you will be amazed with the clock work precision of everything. Please do not fall into a bad habit just because the place you are currently working in is run shoddily. In all your affairs, meeting, emails, follow ups, be on time and be on time every time.

8. Lack of Appreciation

We like people who like us. Want to be liked? Like others, around you. Its as simple as that. Appreciation is one of the best ways to tell someone else that you like them, their work, and that you are happy to be working for them.

9. Gossip

Refrain. Ok, listen, dont start, dont participate, dont propagate, just be in the know. Actually, dont. Cant decide on this one. The rumour mill always knows everything first and its important to know stuff, but as a practice I am against it.

10. Lack of Feedback

You dont like something, or someone, or something that someone does or maybe something that someone does not do. tell them. talk to them. give feedback, let the other person what your expectations were and maybe next time they can fulfill it. Just wishing they will magically know what you want is just that, wishful thinking.

Bonus - Lack of Ownership

Treat your workspace, your company as yours. That's right, if you were the owner would you bad mouth your company to outsiders? Would you let one of your own team members fail? would you withhold information? Would you waste?
Treat the place as your own.

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    • prabhjotbedi profile image

      Prabhjot Bedi 6 years ago from chandigarh

      @Jatin Thank you!

    • prabhjotbedi profile image

      Prabhjot Bedi 6 years ago from chandigarh

      @laura thank you!

    • profile image

      Jatin Chhabra 6 years ago

      Wow, really nice points. I've noticed the work ethics in UK & India, and I believe that the above points r 99% accurate. But 5th slide is a little too much....

    • profile image

      laura P 6 years ago

      very good points were made in this article.

    • prabhjotbedi profile image

      Prabhjot Bedi 6 years ago from chandigarh

      @Sujit Thank you!

    • profile image

      Sujit Mishra 6 years ago

      Its true sir

    • prabhjotbedi profile image

      Prabhjot Bedi 6 years ago from chandigarh

      @Jaspals Thank you so much!

    • Jaspals profile image

      Jaspal Singh 6 years ago from India / Australia

      Very true. You have pointed very right reasons for not succeeding. Wonderful Hub.