Everyone has little habits at home and at work. Whether it’s the time of day when you check your email or how you work with groups, these habits can affect how you work with others and your career.
Making minor changes can improve your productivity, your job satisfaction and your overall standing with your team.
Here are nine habits you can start forming today to help your career as an entrepreneur
- Learn how to listen
There’s a big difference between truly listening to someone and simply waiting to talk, said Dana Brownlee, founder of Professionalism Matters. Most people tend to do the latter when they’re pretending to do the former, but if you make the effort to hear, process and respond thoughtfully, your colleagues will take notice.
Brownlee’s advice: “Listen to others as if you’d be quizzed on what they were saying. Listening keenly not only allows you to extract better information, it makes the other person feel heard, which is huge in terms of building relationships. That type of skill, if nurtured and developed early, can be invaluable.”
- Solve problems
No matter what field you’re in, knowing how to solve problems is useful. It shows your capabilities and willingness to play on a team. Showing those traits early can be beneficial. When it comes to hiring, Jeff Wiss, vice president of corporate marketing at Duo Security, noted one of the most important traits his company looks for in candidates is their ability to solve problems.
- Double-check and confirm
One of the biggest causes of workplace conflict is unclear expectations, both on the part of managers and employees. If one person gives directions in a vague or confusing way, or the other person assumes his or her own interpretation is correct, neither party gets the results and validation it wants. Adam Robinson, co-founder and CEO of hiring tech company Hireology, said the best way to combat this is to consistently check in about projects to clarify what the other person expects from you (or what you need that person to do).
- Say “thank you”
Gratitude is a very simple but often overlooked tool for building strong relationships, especially in the workplace. Everyone wants to feel appreciated, and making a regular habit of thanking others for their efforts can go a long way, said Deidre Paknad, CEO of collaboration software Workboard.
- Seek out quiet
Even when they’re not physically in the office, today’s workers are answering emails, taking work calls and completing tasks at all hours of the day and night. The constant influx of notifications and communication can make your mental space awfully noisy, which can hurt your focus at work. That’s why Melanie Wells, founder and clinical director of national psychotherapy franchise The Lifeologie Institute, recommends taking a few minutes every day to remove these distractions and reset your mind.
- Manage your time well
Failing to set and meet deadlines at work not only reflects poorly on you as an employee, but makes everyone on your team look bad as well, said Allen Shayanfekr, CEO and co-founder of real estate crowdfunding platform Sharestates. The inability to complete a project in time because a meeting ran over, or because you were side-tracked with a task that could have been delegated out, will have a negative impact on your professional growth within a company.
- Embrace positivity
Who would you rather have on your team when a project is going poorly: Someone who tries to stay positive and get back on track, or a “Debbie Downer,” who constantly laments the situation and blames others? Hireology’s Robinson said that negativity is one of the worst habits that hold people back, in life and in their careers. Actively working against your inclination to complain when things get tough can really improve your team morale — and your standing within the organization.
- Set goals and monitor your progress
Goals are a prerequisite to success, Workboard’s Paknad said. They’re how you define what you’re striving for, what success looks like and how your impact is measured. Before you begin your workday, take a moment to write down and review your short- and long-term goals, and any progress you’ve made on them.
- Be honest with yourself
Having self-awareness about your strengths and weaknesses can help you to do your very best in your current and future roles. This is especially true of your weaknesses. Wells, of The Lifeologie Institute, noted that taking full inventory of what she’s not good at has been much more important than listing what she is good at, because understanding your own skill gaps means you can seek out the right people to complement them.
Culled from Business News Daily