Office workA while ago, i wrote about the top ten things that none of us should do at work. Today, i have a list of 10 things that are generally considered good for the society, but never work in practice. I have been a victim of these things in the past. These are definitely tried and tested points that everyone of us need to avoid to be successful, especially at work.

Disclaimer: These topics should be taken with a pinch of salt – meaning they are not hard and fast. Whilst most of the time these rules help, sometimes they can go against us. It really depends on the environment and type of people we deal with everyday.

1. Too much empathy

Empathy is understanding others’ situation and circumstances. It is good and very much required in order to have a successful team, but too much empathy does not favor us. With lots of empathy, we tend to adjust very well to other’s mistakes while they might start taking advantage of our good heart.

2. Criticism even when asked for

Time after time, people ask for criticism. They say they are very much looking forward to hearing negative comments about themselves. Companies organise 360 degree feedback on managers to understand their pitfalls. But humans (especially a professional in a higher job grade) cannot take criticism just like that. Even though they ask for it, most of the time they are expecting some good words and not really bad ones.

3. Being fair with all

A good deed in theory, a bad way of life in practise. Ideally we want to be fair to all and help them with their troubles. But people often take advantage of this good thought. The best way to deal with people, especially at work, is to mirror them. Just give back what they give you. In my theory, this is not unfair at all. By behaving the way they behave to us, we at least can avoid any possible humiliation.

4. Playing by the rules of humanity

Most good people believe that every human should be respected irrespective of his / her personal attributes like colour, position, money, etc. But unknown to mankind we all still live in groups and associate and disassociate ourselves with people based on values and ideals we possess. This being true, there is no point in trying to follow all the rules of humanity in a workplace. After all, this world is a competitive place today and there are many ready to punch the moment we duck. Beware!


5. Challenging your boss

Almost all organisations encourage their employees to challenge each other on ideas and views. Though they like to advocate this fact, very few really take it seriously. Even if the company takes it seriously, employees may not. Especially whoever is above the job grade will find it extremely difficult if he /she is challenged. Instead of finding yourself in a puddle of hatred, try and avoid direct challenges with seniors.

6. Being level headed

When i was young, my parents insisted i stayed low headed despite what i had achieved and i believe this quality has stayed on with me. But with such a gem of a quality, i found it to be very difficult to grow up in career. Most people who were appraising me were not capable of understanding my potential by my actions. Instead they expected me to talk about myself. I found it very hard to fight this habit and talk about what i can do, but after i started doing it, i have grown steadily. Ironical, but true!

7. Accepting weakness

People who are really capable of achieving wonderful things are always ready to accept their weaknesses. They do this because they know what they are capable of doing and also because they want to go further in their career. But such people are few and far in this society. We are dominated by people who grade and brand others based on what they are told. So never accept weakness. Instead talk to your friend or someone in your family to identify your weakness and work on it without disclosing it. If you don’t tell it, many will never know it.

8. Demanding equality

The human society thrives on inequality. Never in the history of mankind, there has been equality and there will never be. We all have to get used to this fact and live with it. So there is no point in expecting equality in the workplace either. There will always be favorites and not-so-favorites. If you one of the not-so-favorites, don’t be disheartened by it. Push for equality if situation favours or else simply accept it!

9. Being truthful at all times

Common sense says that lying is not something that should be encouraged within the society. But being truthful at all times can works out against us. Where truth has to be withheld, it has to be done, especially if truth would cause more problems and issues.

10. Views, views and views

People ask for views but never care about what is told. Being genuine, we would like the person to pay heed and accept what is told, but again that is the way life is. If asked for a view, try and be impartial and disassociate yourself as much as possible from the view. That way it is easy to handle it if it gets criticised or rejected due to other political reasons.

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