Taking Down the Big Four: Bad Habits that Need to Go

Whether they show up at home or on the job, everyone has at least one bad habit. Those that keep creeping up at your job can actually derail your chances for success. Though these habits probably won’t result in you being fired, they may cause others to dislike you. While you don’t have to try to please everyone, here are a list of things that you should change.

These are the big four bad habits and how to change them.

  1. Always Coming in Tardy

There are multiple reasons for why this is happening, and many ways to fix it. Showing up late for work or a meeting doesn’t only affect you. When you’re late, that throws off the rest of the day’s scheduled meetings. It also shows that you devalue other’s time, which is a sure way for coworkers to dislike you. Whether you intend for this subtle message to be communicated or not, frequent tardiness can be very damaging to others and to your reputation.

How to fix it: If you’re late because you keep hitting the snooze button, set your alarm for earlier than usual. Maybe part of your routine is setting you back. Adjust that and make the necessary change. By putting in the effort to eradicate this bad habit, you’ll communicate that you do care about others.

  1. Never Having Anything Good to Say

Do people avoid you because of your frequent negativity and bad attitude? This probably isn’t something that will get you fired, but it will become an issue before too long. When you consistently complain or only point out the negative aspects of an idea, people will avoid you, because it sucks the life out of their day too.

How to fix it: You’re going to have issues at work, and it’s not always going to be hunky-dory. Bring ideas for solutions to problems to your peers and/or boss. You may find out that your suggestions not only improve your situation but could also help you get a better raise or even get promoted faster. If you have tried offering suggestions and it did not work, rather than voicing your many, loud complaints, leave them at home. Express yourself to a friend or family member if needed. If they’re major concerns, then take them to your manager or HR. You don’t, however, need to air those all over the office.

  1. Indulging in Gossip

Nothing can damage your reputation faster than trying to tear down someone’s character. Don’t lower yourself by talking badly about someone behind their back.

How to fix it: Consider how you would feel if someone was talking badly about you. A good check for this bad habit is also imagining if you said this to their face. Would you? If not, then don’t say it to anyone else. This includes online or electronic communication too.

  1. Using Improper Communication

When communicating to your superiors, please do not write an informal email peppered with text message abbreviations, inappropriate language and emojis. This includes grammar, spelling and tone. If you would not want it posted in the newspaper, don’t write it!

How to fix it: Pay attention to those red lines and do a little work brushing up on basic spelling and grammar rules. You’ll be glad you did. Also, when communicating professionally, keep that same mind set. Don’t allow yourself to slip into an informal way of communicating just because you’re using electronic means.

If you need help in identifying your bad work habits, ask a trusted office friend or your boss; just make sure you’re able to accept the response. Put in the effort to fix your bad workplace habits; and see how people respond. You—and your reputation—will be glad you did.