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6 Career Killers And How To Avoid Them

Aug 17, 2007
One wrong move can seriously damage your career beyond repair. A flawed plan based upon misinformation, a sudden outburst and petty office politics can all sabotage your career. All the years of hard work and your education and successful planning can be rendered insignificant by any one of the career killers. Young workers especially need to pay particular attention to their behavior, punctuality, attitude and even appearance; although, these less obvious blunders are not left unnoticed. The same word of caution holds true for older workers, but with some additions. Developing a good reputation is as important as keeping it intact.

To help you keep your career on track, identifying career killers and avoiding them is essential.

The Career Killers

1. Setting Small Goals: Your journey is only as far as your destination is. Setting small goals incapacitate you and leave you with regrets much later in life. Setting big goals and having a plan to achieve them gets you noticed, and noticed by the right people.

2. Playing Office Politics: This is another wrong path to tread. Strangely, some people have an unnatural affinity to gossiping and playing politics. While you engage in this, the wrong people in the office notice you. And this works against you, rather quickly.

3. Procrastination: Procrastination is in some people's blood. Don't let it be in yours. More often than not, it adds to your inefficiency and highlights your performance as poor. In the bigger scheme of things, your procrastinating could hamper the entire operation and put your career at risk.

4. Craving For Instant Gratification: This is a new tendency in recent years. Developing a sense of entitlement or need for instant gratification irrespective of whether the time and experiences are ripe or not brands you as both inexperienced, junior and unprofessional.

5. Failure To Focus: An inability to concentrate on your job responsibilities, no matter the reason, and settling for mundane tasks will rob you of the chance to shine in you're your position. In addition, you can't showcase your strongest skills when you can't focus. More importantly, you allow yourself to be seen as not ready for the next, natural career progression.

6. Unprofessional Appearance: You are not judged by your performance alone. Carelessness towards your appearance isolates you gradually, regardless of your abilities. People refuse to associate with people with sloppy looks such as unkempt hair, wrinkled clothing or raggedy nails, despite their expertise. It may not be fair, but that's the way it is, so you need to pay attention.

On the other hand building rapport with seniors, sporting a good spirit and networking will always pays rich dividends. After all, it is your career. If you don't care, who else will?
About the Author
Tony Jacowski is a quality analyst for The MBA Journal. Aveta Solution's Six Sigma Online offers online six sigma training and certification classes for lean six sigma, black belts, green belts, and yellow belts.
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