Mar 20, 2009

Am I doing my best at work?

So layoffs have begun at my job, and the water cooler gossip is that the layoffs are all perfomance-based. I know a lot of you may be experiencing the same thing at your jobs. Right now, I'm evaluating my own behavior and trying to make changes where necessary. The Simple Dollar actually has a great article on 14 tactics for getting ahead at work--no matter what your job is. These are really 14 common sense behaviors that most of us know we should be doing, but sometimes don't.

Anyhow, I'm using this as a tool for a quick self-evaluation for my job performance.

Things I'm already doing:
  • Don’t “backstab” anyone. Backstabbing has never really been my scene.
  • Do every task you’re given as well as you can. We just finished our yearly evaluations, and I know this area is my strong suit. I'm really good at what I do. I know that isn't always enough, though.
  • Never use your sick leave as “extra vacation.” It's far more likely that I will use my vacation for sick time. No worries here.
  • Step up to challenges when they present themselves.
  • Own up to your own mistakes.
Things I need to improve:
  • Go to work well-rested and presentable. While I definitely practice good hygiene, I think I could definitely work more on getting a full 8 hours of sleep and sprucing myself up a little for work. I just hate wearing make-up or putting a lot of effort into my hair.
  • Minimize negative comments. I'm not negative about work at work. Any time I have a complaint, I try to frame it constructively so that it's more a well-meaning critique than a whine-fest. The past few months, though, I've definitely been complaining more about my personal life at work, and I need to knock that off.
  • If you have downtime, find something useful to do/Improve yourself in your spare time. I've started taking some of the free courses in my spare time, and I've signed up for a Spanish course (I work for the Latin American team) starting in two weeks. I think it's an area I still really need to work on, not only for my job but also for me, personally.
  • Learn from (and emulate) the people who do their job well.
  • Build positive relationships with everyone in the workplace. I'm very shy, and I'm uncomfortable meeting new people. As a result, the few people I do have a relationship with, it's great. But most people, I don't have a relationship with at all.

The other things, I either haven't encountered opportunity for or the issue hasn't come up in my workplace. I feel pretty good about my performance overall. I think I could go from being a good employee to a great employee, though, with a little bit more work on the side. Looking at this list, is there anything you need to work on at work? Can you think of other things that people can improve upon to be better employees?


  1. I was thinking the other day about this. If I ever got fired could I honestly say I did the best job, I feel like you never do when you're comfortable. I don't even think about negative comments, I am so negative all the time. But I guess in this economy you have to think about it.

  2. Layoffs are happening world wide. It makes me treasure my job even more. Although there are times when my mind cried with boredom at work, but now a days, I'm just so thankful I have a job. I try my best to give it my all everyday. Someone asked me, who is the best example of working hard at work. I thought of a couple co-workers and the Human Resource manager told me the answer is not this person or that person it's "you, on the first day or first week of your job." So I tried to recall how I was on the first day of work, I was eager, careful never to be late, and tried to please everyone and learn everything, and there was passion. =)