Note: This is a reblog of a post that I trot out in June for those who are graduating with plans to embark on a career. These are real life tips that young professionals may find useful.
This is a continuation of the prior blog, where I was detailing 5 tips to help the young professional survive their first year on the job. I was commenting about what to do, if you received negative comments about how you are doing.
Here’s the question:
WHAT HAPPENS IF YOU FIND YOURSELF BEING BLINDSIDED BY A LESS THAN A STELLAR FIRST EVALUATION? DO NOT DOUBT YOURSELF AND DO NOT TAKE ANY OF THE NEGATIVE FEEDBACK AT FACE VALUE.
After you have taken actions to mitigate any fallout from your first negative job evaluation with your direct superior, make an appointment with a higher level decision maker. It is essential that your immediate boss knows that you will act to defend yourself. During the conversation with top brass, never put down your boss. Just mention that you are concerned over not being clearly directed as to what is expected of you, especially since you were recently caught unawares with a poor evaluation. Then list all your accomplishments by referring to your record keeping. Make sure to reach a consensus as to what is expected. As you leave, take time to say thank you. Always act as the consummate professional that you are. KNOW YOUR VALUE.
Three out of five rules to help young professionals succeed in their fist job
3.) Make an effort to build a relationship between you and a mentor within your organization. Skip this rule at your own peril. There are major benefits in finding a mentor, someone who is well respected by his/ her peers and preferably someone in upper management within your own workplace.
Although you may have been your college’s valedictorian or the sports hero, once you walk into your first position, accept the fact that you have a lot to learn from others. It is a given, that as a novice, you will make mistakes. A mentor can advise you in how to navigate in these foreign waters, as well as covering your back for any mishaps that you will inevitably make. In addition those in competition with you will think twice about treating you cavalierly because they know that somehow, you are connected. This makes your life a lot easier when you are starting out in the business world.
If you cannot find a mentor within your organization, find some one on the outside who is in a similar profession with a history for success and who is highly regarded by his/ her peers. With this help, you will still avoid any major pitfalls. Also, make an effort to set aside time on a regular basis for networking with others in your profession. This should be a life long practice.
4.) Please consistently practice the art of demonstrating due deference for whoever you come into contact with at your job. Take time to fully hear out whoever takes time to talk to you and do NOT act as if you know more. Let others know that you appreciate their input whether they are at the bottom or at the top rung of your company hierarchy. Follow through on any promises you make. If you ever had a habit of cutting people off or of being curt, judgmental or flippant with your school mates or sports team members, END this habit quickly. NEVER EVER MAKE UNNECESSARY ENEMIES WITHIN THE WORKPLACE. When you are just starting out, you have virtually no power. However, it takes just one person in a higher mediocre position, who can cost you your job.
5.) With your day planner, whenever, you come across data pertaining to your coworkers, subordinates and bosses, take time to jot down the details. This includes data like the names of spouses and children, as well as important dates like their birthdays, anniversaries, issues that they may be dealing with or anything that is significant to the other person.
How can you expect others to care about you when you don’t take steps to know about the lives of others? Courtesies are always appreciated. For instance, if you know someone’s family member is in the hospital, send flowers while making some gesture to indicate concern.
NOTE: In the workplace conflict will happen. When you confront someone in a professional manner, know what you are trying to accomplish. Always, allow the other party to save face.