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Be Careful Of Being Fired If You’ve Done All These Things At Work

Be Careful Of Being Fired If You’ve Done All These Things At Work

We all realize that in today’s economy, jobs are not easy to come by. Given the fact that there are over 10 million people in the United States alone that are unemployed, once we have a job, most of us try to do our best to keep it.

Of course, statistics will show that more than 70% of the workforce is unhappy with their jobs. The problem that arises when we dislike our jobs or find them uninteresting is that we tend to stray from our work duties while we count down the minutes until we can leave.

Are You At Risk Of Being Fired?

For those of you who are not motivated and seek to pass the day as quickly as possible, you must be very careful not to become a liability at work.

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A business is open for one reason and one reason only – to make money. If you aren’t being productive, then you will likely find yourself out of a job. Being unproductive is one thing, but being careless is quite another.

There are certainly many reasons for being fired and it’s important not to give the big boss any excuses to hand you a pink slip. By paying attention to the small things that may put you in the not so good graces of your boss, you can hopefully avoid getting the ax. Here are 8 things you may overlook that may lead to being fired:

1. Not being punctual.

Shuffling the kids to school, getting that workout in, and sitting in traffic are all things that tend to put us behind schedule. But being on time is extremely important to being productive and remember, you MUST be productive! And let’s face it… it’s really not that hard to show up on time. Being punctual goes a very long way.

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2. Surfing the Internet.

Yes, we ALL have done this and it’s a huge time waster. How easy is it to spend two hours watching epic fail videos on YouTube? What you don’t know is that your computer activity and website history can be and probably is monitored. Not a wise move to add insult to injury. Keep your surfing to the beach.

3. Texting.

It seems as though texting has virtually replaced actual conversations these days, especially with how easy it is with iPhones and the like. A five minute conversation can easily turn into an hour’s worth of texting back and forth. Employers do not want to see you staring down at your phone all day. Put the phone away or take a walk and use it.

4. Disrespecting your boss.

Most of us have had a less than pleasant boss at one time or another. Sure you want to tell them to take a flying leap, but instead you keep quiet and harbor resentment. That resentment will turn into disrespect, which in turn will lead to disrespecting your boss, which will then lead to a “performance review” meeting. You then find yourself on the short list and that’s a place you don’t want to be!

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5. Being lazy.

Doing a shoddy job or flat out not doing your work will put you on the fast track to being fired for sure. By leaving work unfinished or pawning it off on someone else will not only anger your boss, but will also cause you to lose favor with your co-workers. If you just do the work you’re getting paid for, we can all just get on with our day.

6. Having a negative attitude.

Being pessimistic will drag you and your co-workers down faster than the Titanic. Even if you loathe your job and are counting down the days until you quit or retire, bringing negativity into the workplace is going to draw attention and may put you on the chopping block sooner than you like. Trying to find several saving graces about your job and focusing on those can make all the difference between keeping your job and being fired.

7. Being the office gossip.

Heck, we all like to hear dirt about our co-workers. Who’s dating who? Who got passed over for that promotion? If you want to get all the details about your work environment and office-mates, do it outside of the office. It’s merely a matter of time before your boss gets word that you are creating drama amongst the employees and may look to rid himself of your services.

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8. Lying on your resume.

There’s no question here, if we lie on our resumes, we should be fired. Being hired under false pretenses is a terrible way to start a new job. Of course, it’s natural to embellish your accomplishments and job duties to make yourself more marketable, but a flat out lie is inexcusable. Be honest, and even though it might not be as impressive, at least it won’t come back to bite you.

There are dozens of bad habits that can lead to being fired and knowing what is acceptable and what isn’t is a good place to start. Unless you are actually trying to get fired, there is no reason to take part in the activities mentioned above.

Being a good employee is not a difficult thing to do. It all boils down to being honest, hard-working, and giving your absolute best each day. Take care of these things and you will never have to worry about being fired again.

Featured photo credit: Hot_Shot via flickr.com

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Last Updated on January 21, 2020

How to Increase Work Productivity: 9 Ground Rules

How to Increase Work Productivity: 9 Ground Rules

We all have those days when completing our assigned tasks seems beyond reach. With the temptation of social media, mobile games, and the internet in general—not to mention the constant bustle of people in the office—it’s easy to fall prey to disruptions and distractions at work.

So, what can we do about it? How to be productive at work?

While we don’t have a foolproof system that can completely eliminate disturbances and diversions, we do have 9 ground rules that can be applied to help give your productivity levels a boost.

Keep reading to find out our tips on work productivity.

What Does It Mean to Be Productive?

How to be productive at work?” is the age-old question plaguing employees and employers alike around the world. Regardless of where you work and what you do, everyone is always looking for new ways to be more efficient and effective.

But what does being productive actually entail?

Completing more tasks on your list or working longer hours doesn’t necessarily mean you’re being more productive. It just means you’re more busy, and productivity shouldn’t be confused with busyness.

Productivity means achieving effective results in as short amount of time as possible, leaving you with more time to enjoy freely.

It involves working smarter, not harder. It means refining processes, speeding up workflows, and reducing the chances of interruptions.

Productivity is best achieved when looking at your current way of working, identifying the bottlenecks, flaws, and hindrances, and then finding ways to improve.

9 Ground Rules on How to Be Productive at Work

1. Avoid Multitasking

Multitasking can give the impression that more tasks can be accomplished as you’re doing multiple things at once. However, the opposite is true.

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Research has shown that attempting to do several things at the same time takes a toll on productivity and that shifting between tasks can cost up to 40 percent of someone’s time.[1] That’s because your focus and concentration is constantly hindered due to having to switch between tasks.

If you have a lot of tasks on your plate, determine your priorities and allocate enough time for each task. That way you can work on what’s urgent first and have enough time to complete the rest of your tasks.

2. Turn off Notifications

According to a Gallup poll, more than 50 percent of US smartphone owners admit to checking their phones a few times an hour.[2]

Switching off your phone—or at least your notifications—during work hours is a good way to prevent you from checking your phone all the time.

The same applies to your computer. If you have the privilege of accessing social media on your work desktop, switch off the notifications on there.

Another good tip is to logout from your social media accounts. Therefore when you feel the urge to check it, you might be swayed because your page isn’t so easily accessible.

3. Manage Interruptions

There are certain disruptions in the office that are unavoidable such as your manager requesting a quick meeting or your colleague asking for assistance. In order to deal with this, your best approach is to know how to handle interruptions like a pro.

Be proactive and inform the people around you of your need to focus. Turn your status on as “busy/unavailable” on your work chat app.

If you’re on a deadline, let your colleagues know that you need to concentrate and would really appreciate not being interrupted for the moment, or even work from home if that’s a feasible option for you.

By anticipating and having a plan in place to manage them, this will minimize your chances of being affected by interruptions.

4. Eat the Frog

Mark Twain once famously said that:

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“if it’s your job to eat a frog, it’s best to do it first thing in the morning. And if it’s your job to eat two frogs, it’s best to eat the biggest one first.”

What this basically means is that you should get your biggest, most urgent task out of the way first.

We all have that big, important task that we don’t want to do but know we have to do because it holds the biggest consequence if we don’t complete it.

Eat the frog is a productivity technique that encourages you to do your most important, most undesirable task first. Completing this particular task before anything else will give you a huge sense of accomplishment. It will set the ball rolling for the rest of the day and motivate you to eagerly complete your other tasks.

5. Cut Down on Meetings

Meetings can use up a lot of time, which is time that can be used to do something useful.

You have to wait for everyone to arrive, then after the pleasantries are out of the way, you can finally get stuck into it. And sometimes, it may take a whole hour to iron out one single issue.

The alternative? Don’t arrange a meeting at all. You’ll be surprised at how many things can be resolved through an email or a quick phone call.

But that doesn’t mean you should eliminate meetings altogether. There are certain circumstances where face-to-face discussions and negotiations are still necessary. Just make sure you weigh up the options prior.

If it’s just information sharing, you’re probably better off sending an email; but if brainstorming or in-depth discussion is required, then an in-person meeting would be best.

6. Utilize Tools

Having the right tools to work with is crucial as you’re only really as good as the resources you have at your disposal. Not only will you be able to complete tasks as efficiently as possible, but they can streamline processes. Said processes are essential to a business as they manage tasks, keep employees connected, and hold important data.

If you’re the manager or business owner, ensure your team has the right tools in place.

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And if you’re an employee and think the tools you currently have to work with aren’t quite up to par, let your manager know. A good team leader understands the significance of having the right tools and how it can impact employee productivity.

Some examples of tools that could be used:

Communication
  • Slack for team chat and collaboration.
  • Samepage for video conference software.
  • Zendesk for customer service engagement.
Task Management
  • Zenkit for task and project collaboration.
  • Wunderlist for listing your to-do’s.
  • Wekan for an open source option.
Database Management
Time Tracking
  • Clockify for a free tracker.
  • TMetric for workspace integrations.
  • TimeCamp for attendance and productivity monitoring.

You can also take a look at these Top 10 Productivity Tools to Help You Achieve 10x More in Less Time.

7. Declutter and Organize

Having a disorganized and cluttered workspace can limit your ability to focus. According to researchers, physical clutter can negatively impact your ability to concentrate and take in information.[3] Which is why keeping your work environment well ordered and clutter-free is important.

Ensure you have your own system of organization so you know what to do when the paperwork starts to pile up.

Being organized will also ensure that you know where to find the appropriate stationery, tools, or documents when you need it. A US study reveals that the average worker can waste up to one week a year looking for misplaced items.[4]

Here’s a useful guide to help you declutter and organize: How to Declutter Your Life and Reduce Stress (The Ultimate Guide)

8. Take Breaks

Taking regular breaks is essential for maintaining productivity at work. Working in front of a computer can lead to a sedentary lifestyle which can place you at a higher risk of heart disease, diabetes, and obesity. Even a 30 second microbreak can increase your productivity levels up to 30 percent.

As well as your physical health, breaks are also crucial for your mental and emotional wellbeing. That’s because your brain is like a muscle, the more it works without a break, the easier it is for it to get worn out.

Ensuring you actually take your breaks can prevent you from suffering from decision fatigue. It can also help boost creativity.

Take a look at this article and learn why you should start scheduling time for breaks: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

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9. Drink Water

Although we know we should, it’s easy to forget to drink enough water during the working day.

Many of us turn to tea or coffee for the caffeine hit to keep us going. However, like taking breaks, drinking water is essential for maintaining productivity levels at work. It’s simple and effective.

Not drinking enough water can lead to dehydration and also headaches, tiredness, and weight gain.

A good tip to avoid dehydration is to keep a water bottle at your desk as it can serve as a reminder to constantly drink water.

If you find the taste of water a little bland, add some fruit such as cucumber or lemon to give it a better taste.

You can also get more ideas on how to drink more water here: How to Drink More Water (and Why You Should)

The Bottom Line

The preceding 9 ground rules on work productivity aren’t the be-all, end-all. You and the company you work for may have other tips on how productivity is best increased and maintained.

After all, it’s something that can be perceived differently depending on the exact job and work environment.

In saying that, however, the 9 ground rules serve as a good foundation for anyone finding themselves succumbing to disruption and distraction, and are looking for ways to overcome them.

A good tip to keep in mind is that change doesn’t happen overnight. Start small and be consistent. If you slip up, just dust yourself off and try again.

Developing habits happens gradually, so as long as you keep up with it, you’ll soon start to notice the changes you’ve been making and eventually enjoy the fruits of your labor.

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Featured photo credit: Cathryn Lavery via unsplash.com

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