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Be the Employee of the Month Everyday!
In the first year of the Obama administration the economy is still in a slump. More than at any other time, employees worry about their jobs as the pool of applicants and mendicants grow larger—all begging for employment. With this preamble it only stands to reason that those who are employed should do their best to retain their jobs.
“Easier said than done, my friend,” some might say. But take these good words from me, a humble servant who was never laid off, let go, fired, or otherwise unemployed in more than 40 years in business. Retention is the name of the game!
So what are the factors that will impress your boss, to the point of never wanting to get rid of you? Follow these few simple steps and you’ll enjoy security, peace of mind, and restful sleep at night.
1. Don’t be a clock watcher
Ah! Always be the first one to come in and the last one to leave. Volunteer for the tasks that require a little overlapping with theater hours. Those employees who have tickets for concerts, Madison Square Garden, Carnegie Hall, movies, dinners, and other amenities will rather take a demerit than cancel and stay late. That you stay and ‘sacrifice’ your time will not go unnoticed by your boss.
Occasional weekend duties will also be noticed. So, while others enjoy their time off, you are enjoying a sense of job security; not to say absolute peace of mind and good sleep. One caveat, however, is in order: don’t overdo it.
2. Never bad-mouth your boss
Whether you and your co-workers are at the local water hole relaxing, downing a few libations, or even sharing a rest-room chat, never let your guard down and join the chorus in criticizing the boss. Let others do it. Inevitably, gossip, innuendo, and malicious rumors about the boss have a way of finding its way into the victim’s ears.
Even what seem to be harmless comments can be distorted by others. If someone says, “Hm--yes, she has heavy legs, but at bottom she has a decent figure,” can reach the bosses’ ears as, “Hm—yes, she has a heavy bottom and indecent legs.” Or, maybe even a worse unintended insult.
Steer clear of criticism. And don’t ever put the boss on the spot with pointed questions.
Also, remember that technology —besides being a great friend— can be a formidable beastly enemy that can bite and extract a pound of flesh. E-mail, messages in Facebook, Twitter, or other social networks can become evidentiary trails.
3. Request a meeting with the boss every so often
In general, good bosses will classify subordinates as those who earn and deserve their time, those who take their time, and those who really waste their time.
Be a stellar employee by earning and deserving the boss’s time!
Let the boss know your progress in the tasks assigned, reporting your successes as well as failures and blunders; and in the latter cases, ask for guidance. Don’t let the boss ignore you for long periods of time. A good supervisor will be glad to mentor, train, develop and pass on wisdom to good subordinates.
4. Stick to the truth and the honorable
Employees who lie and act dishonorably will in the end defeat themselves. The old adage, the truth shall prevail, is a repository of wisdom.
5. Wear the aura of competency
While it is a good habit to over-consult rather than to under-consult with your boss, you must show that you have exhausted all the possible resources available to your rank and grade. Bosses like subordinates who are thorough and do their ‘homework’ and research. Save your notes so that you can refer to them when discussing your research and efforts.
Remember, if you give 100 percent of yourself you’ll be noticed as an employee who goes the distance.
Be a self-starter. Don’t wait for direction. And in the process make sure you fit in with the rest of the team; make sure that you harmonize. There’s a delicate balance between being an individualist and a team player: try to find a comfort zone between the two.
Your wholesome performance and your team-player attitude will give you the aura of competency that many employees don’t even suspect it exists. This is what makes an employee likable, indispensable, and above all—a survivor.
Why win the title ‘employee of the month’ only once when you can win it every day?
Wear the aura of competency to distinguish yourself from all others.
In the end, ‘retention’ is the name of the game in these tough times.