4 Lessons Learnt at Work : Part 1


Next month I will be celebrating my second year in the organisation I am currently in. Alhamdulillah. One of the many things I love about this organisation is the supportive team that I have, including my superiors. They portray effectively (to me at least) what it takes to be a respectable leaders, and the tricks and trade of getting things down without much friction. Below are the few things which I learnt :-

1.NEVER ASSUME

In any cases, whether you are providing an explanation or an answer , never never assume. Be sure what you are going to say. It should be 100% confirmed and legit what you are saying else you may find yourself in trouble for giving inaccurate information. If not sure, ask the respective party(ies). Assumption goes a long way especially when you repeatedly give the wrong and inaccurate numbers. Terminal errors and mis-communication happens because of our ‘assumptions’. So, just avoid assuming. Take time to check for accurate answers rather than answering spontaneously but inaccurately.

2. AVOID CONFRONTATION

Whether you are the bad guy, or the victim, Please, have a sense of courtesy to approach your subjects professionally. No point rubbing it one’s fault in their face, as the mud is actually on your face. Confrontation reaps apart relationships, joy and warmth at work place. I was confronted today by a team of ‘guys’ (since I am not calling them Gentlemen), who came to my cubicle to get some information . I was busy and focused on getting some important emails out, when they appeared at my cubicle.  Demanding for explanation and answers which I could not provide them straight away. And not forgetting their impatience, I had to actually say ‘Boleh sabar tak?’ (meaning can you please be patient).

If I have left it to my emotional instinct, the bad will be on me. I made a quick call to my boss, and asked my superiors what they wanted. Still, the reply from these three guys were nothing near professional in spite calling themselves employees of this organisation.  This is a test for me. These guys were not focusing on the problem objectively,and HOW to solve the issue, instead took their visiting spree to my department as grounds to point fingers at me, and tell me in the face how efficient I am right in my face. Whoa, small fishes in the ocean talking to a small fish in the small tank. Even took THREE (3) of them to tell me this. Talk about communication efficiency and problem solving ! But yeah,  I thought I kept my cool alright #candobetternext time. Again, just avoid confrontation. You won’t know if you’ve ruined someone’s day, who for example, wasn’t even good to start with. Be fair and accommodative to others, and have some sense of respect to yourself First. Confrontations are for kids who are out of words and innovative ideas of how to solve problems.

3. HUMAN TOUCH FIRST

Do you feel that automatic robot aura every time you log in to work ? The emotions and human essence put aside until log out time?? Yes?No? Well guess what, robots were not designed to build rapport. They were built to execute and assist. If you think you can go through morning till evening, or depending what time your shift it,by all means be a robot. No wait, you can be a robot all your life and not worry of having any human touch and emotions.

My superior have advised me, for any communication if possible and whenever practical, meet the person first. Most times we rely on Instant Messaging and email as our 1st channel of communication The least we can up this  is to actually make a phone call to the person that you will be emailing , as a heads up for the email. Or, if you have not met the person, go meet the person. You build rapport quickly this way as the other person knows that you are putting the effort to get to know this person/his job/how he works.

If you are in the same department as the other, or, the same building, get that buttocks off the seat and drop by that person’s office to introduce yourself, then start talking business. How many years have we sent out emails, or called up anybody at work to strangers at work? These strangers apparently work within the same company,and get things done for us.  Well, unless you are in Customer Service, it really pays to find an excuse for a short exercise around the office. Trust me. Your network flourishes better, and people will find it easier to work with you.

4. SAY HELLO, GOOD MORNING !

If  you think nobody is talking to you, or smiling at you, its probably because they think you are not approachable to begin with. Why ? Because you hardly smile, and don’t bother to greet anybody! You know that stone cold straight faces we put on when we enter the office lift? Yeah, those expressions which screams don’t disturb me. I happen to know somebody whose name the whole (well almost) department until today do not know !!. Weird..but true .

Try it for a week and see. Talk to no one, smile to non.  Eventually nobody wants to talk to you. Pretty much what goes on around us we may ‘assume’ is sourced from the so called office culture, or the existing clicks around work place. But hey, if you are overly quiet and not making yourself open and engaged with fellow co-workers, superiors and subordinates, then its you sending the signal ‘Leave me alone’.

Of course we need our ‘we’/us/i time. But at work, we are expected to engage with the others. Differentiate this with distracting minor and important distraction when you are preparing for that report due tomorrow. Come year end review, and during rotation season, you’ll see that there’s no real harm being friendly and nice to everybody. When the bosses meet and talk about their subordinates, ..well, you want to make sure your name is mentioned for a good reason !

I hope you find this useful. I am trying to turn all the strong emotions, positive and negative, whatever I felt and went through today to good use here. You are welcomed to rate, Like and share this article with your friends. Thank you !

My colleagues and I having fun during the department's raya gathering last month
My colleagues and I having fun during the department’s raya gathering last month. Stress at workplace is normal. So we have to work our way through it positively without risking positive relationships and rapport with those around us.
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One comment

  1. thanks for the heads up.. just started work at one company (never worked in an office before) and i’m trying not to lose my head, especially when my buddy always scold everyone around her (including me) for whatever reasons, which actually relate to her early pregnancy period..it’s be easy to understand her situation, yet rather challenging to keep things calm. i would love to avoid confrontation as long as forever. and would love to implement the other tips you’re sharing 🙂

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