5 Practices of Professional Prudence

Be Punctual

It’s amazing how much of a struggle this can be for some people and I never really understood why. It is so easy to be on time. Being punctual is one of those things that doesn’t really help, but it sure can hurt. Let’s say you have a job interview Wednesday morning at 8:00 AM. If you’re there at 7:55 AM no one cares. It’s expected. What if you don’t show up until 8:05 AM? That’s an issue. It’s a small thing that a lot of people brush off of their conscientious, but it makes a huge difference. To me, it is a sign of respect for whomever you are meeting. It shows that you value their time and understand that there are probably 1 million other things that he/she could be doing. Being on time is something that takes very little effort, but adds so much to personal credibility.

Avoid Foot-in-Mouth

I was having trouble phrasing this idea, but essentially it comes down to being aware of what you are saying, and to whom you are speaking with. While at work, don’t say anything offensive about coworkers, supervisors, or the firm in general. First, it’s rude. It’s like biting the hand that feeds you. Second it kills reputation, morale, and the credibility of the whole organization. As soon as someone starts badmouthing someone or something, the whole staff will pick it up and the rumor mill will take over. Pretty soon it spreads like a cancer throughout your office and hurts everyone who comes in contact with the information. So keep your feet on the ground, and be mindful of the professional situation you find yourself

Be Considerate

This one is huge. Being considerate is one of the greatest predictors of professional success, and many Human Resource professionals use personality tests to determine what degree a candidate shows consideration for others. Nobody wants to work with a jerk. It is important to take some time to get to know your coworkers and understand that they are probably similar to you. Be considerate of their feelings; understand that they have issues outside of work similar to yours. Further, ask about them. Get to know them. Even the simplest “How are you today” goes a long way in showing someone how much they matter to you. No one can make it through their day alone, so please take into consideration the thoughts and feelings of others as we all navigate the professional world together.

Have a Sense of Humor

This is a must not only in a professional setting, but in private as well. If only to avoid being dry, a sense of humor can add so much to your day. Nothing builds teamwork and cooperation like laughing together. A joke, a chain email, grammar mistakes these are all examples of common office phenomenon that provide some humor. Use them! Also, laugh at yourself. In the many years we all will spend working there are bound to be many mistakes. The quickest way to get over them is to laugh, and acknowledge that if it has happened once it will most assuredly happen again.

Be Enthusiastic

Attack each day with enthusiasm. Some days are more difficult than others, it could be a sore throat, a head ache, a case of the Monday’s; there are so many excuses for being a Debbie Downer. Please don’t use them! Energy is contagious. Your energy! Coming to work with a sense of purpose and drive revs up the whole office and makes the day so much easier. When you walk in the door and are excited about what is about to happen the rest of these tips become much easier to follow. Excitement leads to anticipation which leads to passion, which leads to success. Attack each day with enthusiasm and you will find yourself enjoying and succeeding where ever you go.

Author: Thomas Walker

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