Are you a twenty-something starting out in their career? Have you gone off to work in an established organisation? Are you working in a Startup? Are you ambitious to work your way to the top? Well…. Do I have an interesting view that I would like to share with you all?
We are the Social Media Generation. We are the generation that checks their Facebook, Instagram and Twitter feeds before we jump out of bed. And what’s most interesting about Social Media is that we prefer to see what bar our friends did last night, how attractive (or unattractive) your ex looks in their latest selfies or even what the local keyboard warrior is ranting about this time. Now at the risk of making a drastic generalisation, it’s no wonder why we get a bad wrap from other generations. We are too often than not caught up in our immediate circles and ourselves that we often dismiss what’s really going on in the world. I guess that’s why I often hear the “Oh, you mean Gen-My?” joke around my office.
Why I mention the above, is that we as human beings need to have our opinions validated by the tribes which we belong to. And with Social Media and Blogging Platforms, everyone has a chance to make it. However, is this how the Workplace functions? Are the candidates with the most outspoken opinions and eccentric personalities progressed in the typical Fortune 500 organisation? Are those who dismiss the current guard with brute force and consciously choose to be the square peg in the round hole promoted? I think those who have made it thus far into this article know exactly what I’m talking about.
Believe it or not, Generation Y, we can go so much further than you believe if we consciously decided to omit three little behaviours that delay your promotion every single day. The craziest part about it is that once you consciously remove them from your modus operandi, you will begin to notice them more than ever within your colleagues. The saddest part about all of this is that once you recognise their behaviour, you will be handed an invaluable insight into why they are where they are today.
Behaviour One: Criticising
I am absolutely certain that all of us are a perpetrator of this from time to time. However if you wish to progress your career and influence your tribe, it may be of great interest to you to eliminate this nasty habit. Have you ever heard a phrase such as “Oh, why are you doing that? That’s so old and stupid!”, “You take too long!” or, my personal (and sarcastic) favorite for the guys “Nice Pink Shirt (snigger)”? Are any of these comments or questions achieving anything? All these comments are really doing are upsetting people and smothering the room with negativity.
Behaviour Two: Condemning
By definition, to Condemn is to express complete disapproval for an act or event. Generally speaking, you generally hear this word thrown around by Political Leaders expressing their dissatisfaction or disgust by another party’s actions. This doesn’t mean that this happens in the workplace. I’m sure you’ve heard a Senior Leader condemning x or y for their behaviour in a meeting or their inability to adopt an ‘one team’ approach. The act of condemning implies that one party’s values or morals in a situation are superior to the other party. This can only lead to further conflict, which again, is bad news.
Behaviour Three: Complaining
If one generation could take out a gold medal for anything in Rio this year, it would definitely be my fellow Gen-Y’s. I’m sure we hear at least one person within our tribe complain every day. Whether our food is too cold or too spicy, or whether the task is too boring or difficult; People set out to find the bad in anything and everything. And what does it achieve? By complaining, what have you contributed to the work environment? Have you provided a viable alternative solution and improved the status quo? All you are really doing is hindering the day of all others around you and you shouldn’t be proud of it. Pro Tip: Don’t complain to your boss. Unless you provide him with a viable alternative which will add profound value to your organisation, all he cares about is whether the task is complete or not.
It is simple as that: Don’t criticise, condemn or complain. And if you take all this on board and go to work in rectifying your bad habits, you will be amazed how far this will take you. Embrace it.