Sunday, 2 October 2011


There is no magic formula for attaining instant career happiness and success.  Happiness and success in the working world is more of a strategic goal one must progressively work toward.  It’s kind of like building your dream house.  You architecturally map out a plan, research all your options, pour a solid foundation, and begin building from the ground up.  There are, however, plenty of steps you can take to make your venture a bit more proactive.  Here are 40 quick tips that should help push you in the right direction.
  1. Understand that career happiness involves doing what you love.
  2. Understand that career success is excelling at doing what you love.
  3. Invest your emotions into your trade but detach your trade from a specific employer.
  4. A higher salary buys temporary comfort, not prolonged happiness.
  5. Be social and friendly with your boss, but do not attempt to be his or her best friend.
  6. Make at least one good friend at work you can trust.
  7. Follow in the footsteps of a mentor you can learn from.
  8. Be the expert.  Never stop perfecting your trade. 
  9. Always except a challenge, especially if your superiors are watching.
  10. If you are really miserable, do not be afraid to make a drastic career change.  Just make sure you plan for it.
  11. When it comes to your colleagues… Be patient.  Be tolerant.
  12. When it comes to your boss… Be respectful.  Go out of your way to assist him or her any chance you get.
  13. You will make mistakes.  Learn through each of your mistakes and never allow the fear of making one hold you back.
  14. Do not stall on taking the first step in any task.  The first step is always the hardest, and once taken, it sets up the momentum needed to more easily knock out the remaining steps.
  15. Make your own career choices.  There is no good reason to let someone else do this for you.
  16. Work for an employer that provides you with the potential for future personal growth within the company.
  17. Employers can have vastly different corporate culture models.  Have an open mind and learn to embrace the corporate culture.  If you have a solemn distaste for it, you might want to switch employers.
  18. If you are ready for more responsibility, tell your boss you are ready.  Also, always ask for performance feedback on your current responsibilities. 
  19. Never struggle with reinventing the wheel unless you have to.  Most of the time adding your own personal touch on top of the successful ideas already being used by your employer is the best way to go.
  20. Maintain a positive attitude even in moments of stress.  It makes you appear confident and in control.  Your colleagues and superiors will notice this.
  21. Avoid being entrenched in foolish office gossip.
  22. Get outside and take a walk at lunch time.  Also, try to get in a little exercise before or after work.  Exercise strengthens both the body and mind.
  23. We are all born with certain strengths and talents.  Leverage these against your career goals and objectives.
  24. Learn to communicate effectively with your colleagues and always be honest and clear.  “Yes, I can do it.” or “No, I need to complete another task first because…”
  25. Always be cognizant of what people are doing around you.  Be vocally grateful if they assist you and assist them when you can.  Your superiors will perceive you as being a team player. 
  26. Smile on the job every time the opportunity permits. 
  27. Take full advantage of your employers 401K retirement match from day one.
  28. Prioritize your objectives every week and enter them into a calendar or planner.  Try to split your tasks into two categories: “Must Do This Week” and “Will Do When I Can”.
  29. A super high salary is not the key to a successful career, but you should still feel comfortable with what you are paid.
  30. Have your employer direct deposit 5% - 10% of every paycheck straight into your savings account.
  31. Get enough sleep.  You will give up a considerable fraction of your potential ability to successfully do your job if you are exhausted.
  32. Never give up on a task.  Instead, learn to readjust your approach when necessary.  It is okay to take a break if you are overly frustrated.
  33. Start on your most difficult tasks for the week first thing Monday morning.  Once complete, the rest of your week will seem like a breeze.
  34. When you are on deadline for a deliverable unplug your network cable and stay offline.  This should help you avoid time sinks like aimless web browsing, instant messaging, and reading miscellaneous emails.
  35. Only attend meetings if you are on schedule with the tasks that are required of you.  If you are behind, kindly ask your boss if you can skip it.  Just make sure the results you produce are visible.
  36.  Network with other people in your industry.  Attend conferences.  Create a LinkedIn page and maintain it.  Regular professional networking will open the door to future career opportunities.
  37.  Whenever you start a new project at work the first thing you should do is read every piece of written material you can find on whatever you will be responsible for.
  38. If it makes you happy and you can maintain productivity, listen to music while you work.  Most managers won’t complain about it if you continue to deliver quality output.
  39. Try to keep your commute time to a minimum.  One of the most stressful parts of any job is the commute.  If possible, find a job near your home or move near your job.
  40. Set realistic, achievable career goals for yourself.  Work diligently with the end in mind.

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