Ten Outmoded Myths Regarding Success
SUREFIRE CAREER KILLERS
Don't Follow These Myths If You Wish To Succeed In The Postmodern Workplace!
We have been taught many things regarding the work ethic and success from our parents, grandparents, other well-meaning relatives, teachers, bosses, and/or associates. Some of their advice is logical and practical. However, over ninety percent of what have been relayed to us about the work ethic and success is totally inapplicable, even irrelevant, in the postmodern workplace. In fact, if a person applies this outdated methodology, he/she will clearly be a failure or thought of as someone not to be respected and/or taken seriously to say the least!
Here the list of ten preposterously outmoded myths regarding success:
(1) Working hard will always make you successful! Let me hear a thunderous applause! Oh no, instead I hear lots of laughter and derision at this one! Working hard DOES NOT guarantee success at all. If all that was true, many people would be wildly successful. Working hard oftentimes makes you the lackey for lazier employees who are ONLY too happy to avoid work knowing that you will take up their slack. Bosses are so delighted with you- you will be inundated with work. They will see you as the ever ready bunny-always working, working! You will develop the reputation of being so ever dependable and never complaining!
As a result of this belief, you will be the ONE more assignments are given to. No matter what,you will be the PERSON they know WILL COMPLETE the assignments at hand. Do you think that you will be respected and honored in the workplace? Oh no, bosses and coworkers alike will view you as the dumping bag. You have such a reputation of being the diligent workhorse of the company-but you will be underappreciated because of your past diligence, bosses expect this to be your usual behavior. You usually end up being taken for granted!
Oftentimes, your diligence could be used against you. You are doing ten times the work of your associates with the same pay. Hard work gets no one anywhere except being expected to assume onerous responsibilities and constantly being on call!
It is better to WORK SMART,not work hard. People who work smart, know what assignments and job duties would benefit them and the corporation. By working smart, you are bound to be noticed and respected more. You will be given exciting and challenging assignments which will utilize your talents and put you in the limelight when it comes to promotions and other job opportunities. Those who believe in working hard will only be deluged with more work and less respect! In fact, you have the reputation of being U-S-A-B-L-E!
(2) Being near perfect or perfectionistic at work will also get you promoted. Have you ever been told that to undertake and perform a job is to do as perfectly or as near perfectly as possible. Yes, all of us have been told this. Furthermore, we were taught if you do a perfect job, you will be noticed and rewarded. Well, not necessarily the case. Like the person who works hard, the perfectionistic person becomes so adept at his/her task that bosses view them as very indispensable. This means that bosses are LOATHE to promote this employee because they would be hardpressed to find an employee that is such a "jewel".
Like the employee who works hard, the perfectionistic employee will also be the one that most of the assignments will be given to because he/she is so excellent! You thought that because you do your work as perfect as possible, that you will be noticed and given a promotion. Often, the opposite occurs because by your work performance, you have aptly demonstrated that you are quite comfortable in your particular niche! Bosses want you as their own as you make them feel very comfortable and the last thing they want is to be uncomfortable. That is what will occur if they promote you. Like the person who works hard, you are also a trusted stand by. Oh, good old reliable! You have dug your own grave by your perfectionism and you do not know it! It is better to do your work reasonably WELL than to be perfect- the person who does his/her work reasonably WELL often enough is noticed and promoted!
(3) You must start at the bottom and work your way up. Another ludicrous myth. Many people who start at the bottom usually end near the bottom. Smart people strategize their career goals. They start as NEAR the TOP as possible. They obtain the prerequisite education and skills. In addition to that, they do internships and/or volunteer in areas which interests them or relate to their careers. Smart people are not nebulous when approaching their careers, they are direct and on target. Willy nilly people DO NOT succeed neither do people who start at the BOTTOM! Oftentimes, starting at the bottom is a career killer!
(4) For those who are recent college graduates-if there is no job related to your education and/or major, take any job and work your way from there. This is totally inane. If you want to succeed, it is best to take a position and/or job which utilizes your education. If you elect to take a job which is beneath you education wise, it will take longer for you to obtain a job and/or career related to your education and/or major. Furthermore, you would be wasting your talents and education on a non-college job.
Non-college jobs are dead-end jobs i.e. they lead to NOWHERE! If you elect to take such a job "until you can do better", you are digging your own career grave. You cannot gain any substantial career experience by taking a non-college job e.g. if you want to be an executive, it would be totally preposterous that your first postgraduate job is that of an administrative clerk. The experience you have as an administrative clerk would be totally unrelated to your future position as an executive! It is best to WAIT until you can find a job and/or career suited to your education, talents, and major! In the meantime, get paid internships and volunteer until you obtain the right career/job!
(5) Corporate culture is not important to success. Wrong! You have to be somewhat aligned to your corporate culture and politics in order to succeed. Many people are failures and/or just surviving in their jobs because their ideas, philosophies, and personas are woefully misaligned with the culture of the corporation. A sensitive humanities major will never understand the cutthroat, dog eat dog business of many Wall Street and/or Fortune 500 corporations. Conversely, a tough business major will find working at a social service agency counselling women at risk to be extremely maudlin at best! In order to succeed and thrive at work, you must fit into the corporate culture! Enough said!
(6) It is WHO you know, not WHAT you know! How many times you have heard this? I know, a multlllion times. Well, I have NEWS for you: knowing someone gets you considered and/or in the door. However, it is WHAT and HOW MUCH you know that keeps you employed and successful! Bosses and superior is only care about your technical knowledgeability regarding the job at hand.
In order to be successful, you have to work smart and market your product. Unless you are working for relatives, no one CLEARLY cares who you know. Furthermore, if WHO YOU KNOW is more important to you than WHAT YOU KNOW, you will soon be UNKNOWN i.e. fired!
(7) Being terminated from a job is the kiss of death regarding career and success. We have been told to avoid being terminated or fired because this will spell the end of our career prospects. Furthermore, we were taught if we were terminated and/or fired, our future employment prospects would be extremely bleak and/or dismal!
This is an extremely nebulous area. In some cases, being terminated and/or fired can be the kiss of death for future employment and/or career prospects. For example, if a person is terminated for theft, violence, committing fraud, embezzlement, and prevarication, he/she can kiss everything goodbye! However, for lesser offenses, depending upon the act involved, he/she is often given other chances. Oftentimes, a person is terminated because he/she is an ill fit for the job, company, and/or boss. Termination is often seen as a blessing in disguise and an opportunity to find a job that you are right for and that you love!
(8) You do not go from company to company! Oh, please! We were taught that going from job to job indicates instability. Well, this myth has gone by the way of the dinosaur! With today's job climate, it is rare that a person will be with one company forever! People are constantly changing companies in search of promotions and better career opportunities. Furthermore, people who usually stay with one company for a long time is often viewed more negatively today than people who worked for many companies. People who worked for varied companies are viewed to be more multifaceted job an social skills than people who elect to stay in one company!
(9) The more education you have, the more job and advancement opportunities you have. In certain technical and specialized jobs such as law, teaching, and medicine, this is the case but in many jobs, this does not suffice! In fact, most professional jobs just require a Bachelor's Degree. From there on, it is your work performance and acumen which determine your advancement opportunities! From my professional work experience, I have seen people with Ph.Ds and Master's Degrees working along people with regular Bachelor's Degrees in the same jobs with the same pay.
(10) The most important thing is JOB SECURITY! Job security is a thing of the past. There is NO such thing as job security if there was ever. The most important thing today is skill security. If you have acquired the prerequisite skills and keep updated, you WILL always have a job!
Now I have presented the ten myths regarding success! Follow them at your own peril!
© 2011 Grace Marguerite Williams