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3 Words You Should Never Use At Work

3 Words I Never Use At Work

Regardless of the field you work in, this applies to you. You may be the star child of the workplace, but winners know this lesson.

Let’s set up a scenario. Say you’re a graphic artist. You’ve just created a great piece of art and the client loved it. Your file is a little sloppy, but it’s good enough to get the point across. The design still looks great and the client likes it.

You could clean up your file structure a bit before you send it off to the vendor, making their job a little easier, but it’s 5:45pm. You’ve put in your time. Let it be the next guy’s problem.

We’ve all done it. It may sound like a little harmless laziness, but that’s the difference between winners and losers.

Someone Else’s Problem

I’ve seen this mentality too often. It slips out in many sneaky forms without us noticing. If you aren’t passionate about your work or your team, no one else will be. So read these three easy methods of stomping out this mentality.

 

STOP WORKING FOR THE WEEKEND.

Start working for the end result. No matter what part you play in a project, the end result is all that matters and should be your top priority. 

When your team works on a project for weeks, and it ends up in a horrible mess, your response can’t be “well I did my job”. If you know the next person down the line is going to have a hard time understanding or already has a lot on their plate, put in the extra effort to help. 

It’s sounds simple, but this is a very controllable effort you can do to push your career forward. A willingness to stay late to support your team goes a long way in the end. This isn’t about being a hard worker or earning your paycheck. This is about having pride in your work and being a good team player. 

 

HAVE A DIALOG.

A common indirect form of this mindset is faceless conversation. It happens when projects get passed from one group to another. Group 1 will grab all of their work, stuff it in a box and leave it at the door of Group 2 with a little note that says “Thx!”.

In many cases, a job will get passed to another person or department without adequate dialog. It comes in the form of an email or some other faceless one-way communication. The receiving party is forced to figure things out for themselves and make assumptions. Even if they do ask questions, they’ve made assumptions on what they think they understand and what they don’t. 

So have a dialog. Pick up that phone you’re staring at all day and call them. Better yet, go visit them and show off what you’ve been working so hard on. They will have a better understanding of the project, and could provide new insight you hadn’t thought of before. 

Then, document everything. Record the conversation on paper so you can come back to it later or share it with your team. Keeping a paper trail is important, since we are flawed human beings and our minds can only remember so much.

 

RIDE TOGETHER. DIE TOGETHER.

Remember that if the project fails, you all fail. You can’t just point fingers at who screwed up. One: this makes you an unfavorable leader. Two: it takes all responsibility off of you to get the job done right.

A “Ride together — Die together” mentality puts things into a different perspective. It allows your team to hold each other accountable and it forces you to communicate with your team members. It’s a much more positive and morale boosting work ethic. 

 

So instead of saying it’s someone else’s problem, try asking
How can I help?

 

-NK

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