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Are You An Outstanding Employee?
by Chris Malone,posted Feb 18 2013 6:09AM
What's the difference between a good employee and a great one? Beyond dependable, reliable and proactive, the answer is "the qualities that are often unnoticed, but make an enormous impact on job performance." That's the word from BNET.com writer Jeff Haden, who has identified nine such traits.
1. A Little Bit "off."
The most outstanding employees are a bit quirky--different from the others. They can be irreverent and unusual, but all in a good way. They shake things up and make work more fun, adding flavor and flair to an otherwise dull workplace. They aren't afraid to challenge authority or test the boundaries, and in so doing they often come up with the best ideas.
2. Know When To Reel It In.
The quirky personality only succeeds in the office until it goes one step (or hundreds) too far. For eccentrics to be outstanding employees, they must know when to rein it in, fit into the team and get the job done. It's knowing the difference between when it's OK to play and when it's time to be serious and work hard.
3. Ignore Job Descriptions.
This is especially important in small companies where priorities shift rapidly, and employees need to do what it takes to get things done no matter what their official job title.
4. Eager To Prove Others Wrong.
Tell a kid who didn't graduate from college that he can't do the job, and it may be just the incentive he needs to prove the doubters wrong. While education, intelligence, talent and skill are all important, it is drive and motivation that are most critical.
5. Praise In Public.
Giving praise in public is a great way to boost morale. Outstanding employees are on the giving end of praise, recognizing the contributions of others.
6. Complain In Private.
while brainstorming solutions in a group is quite effective, some problems, especially those that are sensitive or controversial, are best dealt with one-on-one. Outstanding employees discuss such concerns with the stakeholders behind closed doors.
7. Ask Questions For Others.
It's not uncommon for even the most vivacious employee to clam up in a meeting. Outstanding employees have a gut sense of the issues and concerns of others and take the lead in asking the tough questions when others are hesitant.
8. Start Work On Time.
The best employees don't waste time in the morning getting coffee, chit-chatting and checking their personal e-mail. They start work with a bang.
Call it tinkering. Or tweaking. Or editing. Or redoing. Outstanding employees aren't satisfied with the average. They're willing to rewrite a report, rework a process or revise a spreadsheet to make things better.