6 Bad Habits That Make You Look Unprofessional

By Mel Sim

Avoid them now if you’re serious about getting ahead.

Bad habits are hard to break, especially if you’ve been guilty of them for so long. While some habits are OK to overlook (like a messy desk), some can be the reason why you’re not making the right impression at work.

The thing with no-no bad habits is that they make you look super unprofessional among your colleagues – and your boss too. No one is perfect but if you’re serious about going far in your career, it’s time to ditch these bad habits once and for all. Starting with these six top-of-the-list unprofessional habits.

#1 Procrastinating
There’s nothing impressive about not meeting your deadlines. In fact, it can be downright rude if you’re always guilty of doing things last minute and rushing through them to get it done. Why? Because your part in that project where you’ve failed to deliver may cause your colleagues to not be able to complete their tasks too, which in turn will result in a delay in the overall project. See how this can be classified as unprofessional? Plus, it also makes you look undependable, which is not the impression you want at work.

#2 Watch your temper!
We get it – there are days when you’re frustrated. But don’t let your temper make you look bad (not to mention, scary!) in front of your colleagues. Worst if you’re the type to be sarky, rude, passive aggressive and uses foul language when things don’t go your way. You’re not a child so there’s no need to throw tantrums. If something is really bothering you, be upfront but polite about it to clear the air.

#3 Always late, never early or on time
Hate it when you’re waiting forever for that one person to get to the meeting or start a presentation, like they are wasting your time? That’s exactly how someone feels when you’re always late for something. The occasional five-minutes later can be excusable, especially if it is a rare incident but if you always show up 30 minutes late for everything? Not cool at all.

#4 Respect the boundaries
The office is a place that thrives on respect. If you’re being friendly, there’s a time and place for it at work. So while you think your flirting is harmless, others will think – and say otherwise. Complimenting a colleague? It’s fine but don’t go overboard till it becomes super uncomfortable. Telling your colleagues all about your crazy shenanigans over the weekend? Uhm... not too sure if you really want to disclose it all. At the same time, don’t get too personal with your questions – not everyone is comfortable talking about their personal lives with people they work with.

#5 Making excuses
When something goes wrong, you’re always ready with an excuse – and not the apology or solution you should be coming up with instead. Don’t be that colleague who always has something else to blame on instead of owning up to the mistake. Excuses sound exactly like what they are – just a way to get out of the situation. Be honest, outright and pro-active to take ownership of a mistake and your colleagues will respect you more for it.

#6 Spending more time on your personal agenda instead of work
We get it – it’s important to share that status update on your fab new project at work. But surely that can wait until office hours? So can other personal things like long phone calls and Whatsapp messages with your friends on where to go for brunch this weekend, putting stickers on your Snapchat, and uploading stories on Instagram. There’s a place and time for catching up on social media – and that’s after work and in the privacy of your own home.

Photo by energepic.com from Pexels

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