As we’re talking about things to worry about, or things to fix, there was a fun list of things we should stop doing at work. I’m adding some commentary, too.
- Don’t answer phone calls from people you don’t know – they’ll leave a message if it’s really important and you’ll avoid so many telemarketers.
- Don’t email first thing in the morning, or last thing at night – you’re not awake enough to be communicating, and they can probably wait until you’ve slept or had coffee.
- Don’t agree to meetings or calls that don’t have a clear agenda – start meetings with “Why are we here?” and “What is the objective?” to ensure you actually get anything done.
- Don’t let people ramble – this includes you. Your mother always said to think before you speak! Before you want to share an idea, make sure you’re actively listening, that your comment is apt, concise and clear. It’s hard to maintain people’s interest (and ears) if you babble them through your entire thought process every time. Also, who doesn’t love a shorter meeting?
- Don’t check email constantly – Just because it’s instant, doesn’t mean you have to be instant.
- Don’t over communicate with low-profit, high-maintenance clients – Or other people you work with, too. Make sure you’re spending time on the parts of your role and people that are important.
- Don’t work more to fix being busy – Instead, prioritize, say no, and be clear with all parties about your actions. Being “busy” is a pain.
- Don’t carry a cellphone – This is rough, but sometimes you just can’t be bothered.
- Don’t expect work to fill-up all your needs – Friends outside of work are great, plans outside of work are great. Barriers with work are GREAT.
- Don’t ignore issues – If you see something, say something. Raising a red flag before there’s an issue, most of the time, will reduce the problem in the first place. Speak up.