EIGHT TRAITS THAT MAY BE DAM­AG­ING YOUR CA­REER

Ex­ter­nal pres­sures, ob­sta­cles and dif­fi­cul­ties aside, how many of us are re­spon­si­ble for un­wit­tingly ham­per­ing our chances of ca­reer suc­cess through our own mis­placed and mis­guided at­ti­tudes and be­hav­iour? In this ar­ti­cle, the ca­reer ex­perts at the Mid­dle

Qatar Today - - INSIDE THIS ISSUE -

Mak­ing or break­ing ca­reer de­pends on a em­ployee's at­ti­tude and he or she should avoid eight things at any cost to notch up suc­cesses at work.

1 AB­SEN­TEEISM

Ac­cord­ing to the Bayt.com ‘Ab­sen­teeism in the MENA Work­place' poll, July 2012, 58.2% of pro­fes­sion­als in the Mid­dle East and North Africa (MENA) re­gion be­lieve that em­ployee ab­sen­teeism is ‘very harm­ful' to an or­gan­i­sa­tion, with a de­creased over­all pro­duc­tiv­ity as the most costly prob­lem re­sult­ing from this phe­nom­e­non (ac­cord­ing to 26.8%). Ab­sen­teeism, miss­ing dead­lines, fail­ing to abide by agreed time­lines, ar­riv­ing to meet­ings late and gen­er­ally dis­re­spect­ing ap­proved sched­ules is a sure­fire way to lose cred­i­bil­ity and pro­fes­sional re­spect. With over 90% of MENA pro­fes­sion­als claim­ing that their com­pany keeps a close eye on em­ployee ab­sen­teeism, try to value each and ev­ery minute at work.

2 FAIL­URE TO DE­LIVER ON PROM­ISES

A prom­ise made should be a prom­ise kept if your pro­fes­sional cred­i­bil­ity is to re­main in­tact. Avoid mak­ing prom­ises you can­not de­liver on. Un­less you are known as some­one who can be strictly de­pended on to fol­low through and de­liver on-time you are likely to be passed over for pro­mo­tions and key as­sign­ments. When you do need more time or re­sources for an as­sign­ment, com­mu­ni­cate the re­quire­ment for­mally and pro­fes­sion­ally and man­age the sit­u­a­tion to show you are in con­trol and will not be sac­ri­fic­ing on qual­ity of de­liv­ery. Ac­cord­ing to the Bayt.com ‘Em­ployee En­gage­ment in the MENA' poll, April 2014, 7 in 10 of MENA pro­fes­sion­als feel com­fort­able enough to voice their con­cerns and opin­ions to their man­ager; so should you.

3 POOR IN­TER­PER­SONAL SKILLS

All re­search in­di­cates that emo­tional in­tel­li­gence and peo­ple skills are es­sen­tial in­gre­di­ents for suc­cess in life and at work. In­deed, good com­mu­ni­ca­tion skills, co­op­er­a­tive­ness and flex­i­bil­ity have been re­peat­edly iden­ti­fied as the most sought-af­ter skills by em­ploy­ers in Bayt.com Mid­dle East Job In­dex sur­veys through­out the years. If you have a rep­u­ta­tion as some­one who is dif­fi­cult to work or in­ter­act with, chances are peo­ple will start to avoid you and your suc­cess at mo­bil­is­ing peo­ple or re­sources to fur­ther your goals will be se­verely di­min­ished.

4 POOR TEAM SKILLS

A good team player is able to work co­he­sively within a team frame­work and con­trib­ute, col­lab­o­rate, com­mu­ni­cate and chal­lenge to meet spe­cific goals within that frame­work. In­abil­ity to see be­yond one's self, work well with every­one, find the good qual­i­ties of oth­ers in the team, com­mu­ni­cate per­sua­sively and ef­fec­tively, lis­ten ac­tively and at­ten­tively, give and wel­come in­put, of­fer en­cour­age­ment and as­sis­tance where needed and show re­spect, pa­tience and courtesy in­evitably leads to marginal­i­sa­tion and fail­ure to meet per­sonal and pro­fes­sional goals.

5 LACK OF ETHICS OR PRO­FES­SION­AL­ISM

Con­duct­ing per­sonal busi­ness on the job and any other ac­tiv­i­ties that show fla­grant dis­re­spect for com­pany time, re­sources and prop­erty are both un­eth­i­cal and un­pro­fes­sional. Other un­eth­i­cal ac­tiv­i­ties in­clud­ing chat­ting end­lessly on the job, of­fice gos­sip, wast­ing of­fice sup­plies, back-bit­ing the boss, spread­ing of­fice se­crets, rou­tinely bring­ing per­sonal mat­ters to the work­place all fall un­der this cat­e­gory. In the MENA, 98% of pro­fes­sion­als be­lieve that it is im­por­tant for their com­pa­nies to have and pro­mote ethics and in­tegrity at the work­place (as per the Bayt.com ‘ Val­ues, Ethics and In­tegrity in the MENA Work­place' poll, June 2014).

6 LACK OF INI­TIA­TIVE

Complacency is a sure­fire road to pro­fes­sional medi­ocrity. To suc­ceed it is es­sen­tial that you con­tinue to show en­thu­si­asm, stretch the lim­its, be proac­tive and test the bound­aries in the in­ter­est of in­no­va­tion. Take re­spon­si­bil­ity for your per­sonal and pro­fes­sional growth and con­tinue to build mo­men­tum in your train­ing and pro­fes­sion devel­op­ment ac­tiv­i­ties. If you choose to sim­ply lie low and ca­su­ally bide your time while oth­ers race ahead in their ca­reers you will most prob­a­bly be over­looked for pro­mo­tions and plum as­sign­ments and your skills may well even­tu­ally be­come re­dun­dant. Ac­cord­ing to the Bayt.com ‘Hir­ing Prac­tices in the MENA' poll, Fe­bru­ary 2012, hunger, drive and am­bi­tion have been iden­ti­fied as the most im­por­tant things em­ploy­ers look for when mak­ing a hir­ing de­ci­sion.

7 IN­ABIL­ITY TO HAN­DLE PRES­SURE

Ev­ery job en­tails a cer­tain amount of stress and pres­sure and fail­ure to recog­nise and han­dle the strain may lead to a pro­nounced and sus­tained de­cline in per­for­mance. Learn to recog­nise stress and cope with it pro­fes­sion­ally and ef­fec­tively. Take breaks and hol­i­days when needed, learn to man­age stress and cope with pres­sure so that it is not an on­go­ing prob­lem for you. It may be that the pres­sures mount­ing on you are due to poor time man­age­ment or del­e­ga­tion skills or weak­ness in a cer­tain area in which case de­vel­op­ing your skills in these ar­eas is highly ad­vis­able.

8 COMPLACENCY

You may well be in your com­fort zone and do­ing very well there but if you don't chal­lenge your­self in pur­suit of fur­ther growth and devel­op­ment and con­tin­u­ously move for­ward and up­ward you may lose your equi­lib­rium sooner than you ex­pected. Have a vi­sion in mind as per­tains to your ca­reer and for­mu­late a clear strat­egy and time­line for get­ting there which you can reg­u­larly bench­mark and mea­sure your­self against. Con­tin­u­ous learn­ing, devel­op­ment and self-im­prove­ment is a ne­ces­sity not a lux­ury for to­day's am­bi­tious pro­fes­sional and it is im­per­a­tive that you keep abreast of the lat­est trends, tools and tech­nolo­gies in your field and not risk los­ing ground to the star per­form­ers who take per­sonal growth more se­ri­ously.

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