By Mel Sim

And eventually your success at work!

We all have them… bad habits. Whether in our personal life (still hitting that snooze button? You lose!) and of course, in our workplace as well. The thing about habits are they are easy to pick up but can be difficult to break, especially if it is a habit you’ve been doing for many, many years now.

Unfortunately, bad habits at the workplace can put you in a negative light… and even cost you a promotion. The other bad news? You might not even be aware that you have these bad habits because you’re so used to them (hence why they are called habits!).

So here’s our list on bad habits that we feel are the most toxic at work (some of these will shock you!). Are you guilty of any?

#1 But that’s not my job
Imagine if everyone had this bad habit where they don’t do what’s not within their job scope – woah, there would be no such thing as teamwork and no such thing as getting things done together! It’s possible that you think you’re not qualified to do the job or that you rather leave it up to your colleague who is supposed to do it in case you do something wrong. Or maybe you are reluctant to take it up because your plate is already to the brim!

The issue with this? Your boss will soon realise you’re not a team player and definitely not someone who takes the initiative to thrive or learn new things at work, or even help out when issues turn up! This tells your boss that you’re not the most dependable person at work nor do you have any leadership qualities that include taking one for the team.

#2 Speak first, think later
We get it, you speak your mind. Which is all good if whatever you’re sharing is constructive criticism. But what if it’s not? What if you are the type to say the first thing that pops to your mind and often that is sarcastic, rude, unprofessional, and downright mean? What happens then? Do yourself this favour: Before you speak, think twice or thrice. What value will your words add? If none, then it’s better to keep them to yourself.

#3 You skip lunch
Because you want to do more work, right? Work can get hectic and who has time for lunch when there are deadlines? You, that’s who. Why? Because contrary to your belief that skipping lunch will give you more time to work, it’s actually a bad idea because despite how busy work can get, you need that hour break to get your mind off work, stand up and stretch, and walk around. Besides, the brain isn’t going to function optimally when the stomach is hungry. And taking a proper break gives you the energy to clear your mind and the concentration you need to get through these tough deadlines.

#4 A messy desk means you’re busy?
Nope, nope, nope. Paper all over your desk, files both on and underneath your desk. It only says one thing: You’re sloppy. And you know if you are this sloppy with your workplace, it also means you are pretty sloppy with your work. A messy workplace just shows the status of your mind, all jumbled up too. Plus, being known as the office slob isn’t a great look for you. And if your sloppiness extends to the communal spaces in the office, well it just shows that you lack responsibility that you can’t even pick up after yourself!

#5 You don’t ask for help
Sure you may have figured it all out but sometimes, you need to ask for help or delegate some tasks so you can figure it out even better. But if you’re the type who thinks asking for help means you can’t cope, then it’s time to change that mindset because it can actually make you more successful! How so? Because when you ask for help or delegate, you are also exercising your leadership quality by tasking someone to do something. You are indirectly empowering someone else with new responsibilities and taking on the role of a task master, which will come in handy when you move up the ladder.

#6 CC-ing everyone in the email
First of all, it is annoying for the person who isn’t directly involved with the topic, especially when it’s a thread email with tons going on. Secondly, it points to you being someone who who involves the whole wide world regardless of issue simply because you want to cover your bases, which means you aren’t confident of your work performance. And if you’re the type to CC everyone because you have some grouse, well that just shows you’re somewhat a tattletale and that’s never popular at work. Instead, why not just reply to the people who are directly involved or better yet, pick up the phone and arrange for a con call with them to get even more productive.

Photo by Surface on Unsplash

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