Lately, I run into many people who constantly have the same refrain: “I’m so busy!” or “It's crazy here!” or “I never have the time.” I hate to be critical - but it tells me a lot about you, your personality, and your work habits.
"If the the grass is greener on the other side of the fence, it’s time to water your own grass." Stop trying to compare yourself to others if you always make yourself feel inferior. Stop trying to yearn for a better job, if you don’t first try to make your current job better. Stop making the same mistake again and again because you focus on others and not on yourself.
Stop trying to keep up with the Joneses in your career. Here are some simple tips to help:
How would you rate how effective you are at your current job?
Not how hard you work, how smart? Remember high school . . . do you get straight A’s? Do you do extra credit to ensure that your GPA is at the top? If not, you won’t do any better at your next job. Take night classes, read books, surf the web for knowledge . . . Start watering this lawn.
How many important people do you know in your company?
Outside of your company? Every lawn needs it’s fertilizer – in addition to watering, you need to add a healthy sprinkling of important connections to make your career grow strong.
Are you adding ‘pizazz’ to the current responsibilities you have?
Take a concerted interest in growing your own lawn first. Take work home and see how you can grow your own plot of land first – who can you influence, who can add fertilizer?
Maybe you need to trim your lawn.
Where can you cut? What activities or tasks can be dropped to focus on the more important responsibilities? Who can you delegate to? Hand off some responsibilities that others might want to do?
Are there old cars or rusting play-sets on your lawn?
Time to brush those errant tasks and hangers-on that tend to waste your time and affect the growth of your lawn. Clear out and retire the obsolete activities and the non-essential meetings that take your eye off your lawn.
Are there idiots at night driving on your lawn, making deep ruts with their truck?
Investigate, isolate, and take care of errant peers, bosses, and subordinates who are sabotaging your efforts to grow a strong and healthy lawn. Shut them out of meetings, don’t talk to them and if need be, escalate to the appropriate areas. Also, put up an electric fence around your property — if they decide to go driving again, they will get a real shock!
Try and take care of your own lawn first . . . you might have the best piece of property on the street and not know it until you take action.
Been there, done that. Because of the economy and marketplace, many seemingly normal environments are slowly turning into ‘high-performance’ workplaces (HPW). In addition, if you are working at a startup or within a certain industry (PR, Advertising, Tech, etc.), you might encounter this situation all the time. Here are some tips to help you understand, cope, and succeed in your career:
Who loves their email? Lovin’ those 150-200 emails you receive each day? I expect your answer to be “NO”. But why do we put so much emphasis on it then? Why do we check it whenever we get a spare moment?
It's Monday! Time to hit work after a wonderful weekend . . . check your email . . . get ready for all those wonderful meetings . . . and make sure you schedule for all the work coming down the pike this week. Whoops! Forgot to tell you something . . . Most executives tend to forget that their job isn't supposed to crank out work (okay - that's part of your job - but just follow my thinking for a bit).