Do you read materials from inside your industry or field?
Okay, after last week’s post, you knew that was coming. Reading magazines, journals, blogs – whatever – from inside your industry or field is critical. If you want to stay on top, you have to stay on top of what’s happening, keep your knowledge sharp. In today’s world, there’s no excuse not to.
Do you read materials from outside your industry or field?
Why outside? Put simply, the more widely read you are, the more likely to have a broader view of where your company fits into the world at large. Of how new technology, consumer trends or economic conditions elsewhere may affect the business. It allows you to be more strategic and I would suggest, more creative. Not to mention, a whole lot more interesting.
One of my favorite outlets for reading that expands my mind is Fast Company (magazine or online.) What do you like to read?
One of my favorite topics is creativity. As such, one of my favorite magazines is Fast Company. Here’s a fantastic article of theirs on amplifying creativity in yourself and your business: http://www.fastcodesign.com/1671773/4-ways-to-amplify-your-creativity.
Do you know the unwritten rules of success in your workplace?
If you’re not sure, you don’t. In order to know them, you have to pay attention. You have to observe which behaviors get rewarded and which don’t. Sometimes they’re in alignment with the corporate values statement or policies and sometimes they’re not. Sounds like one big grey area, right? Well, yes. Which is why many people get tripped up. But pay attention to those who have already attained success in the organization. How do they operate? They’ve figured it out the unwritten rules and you might too, if you observe them. Also, if you’ve got an internal mentor, or someone else you trust, even better. Why not ask them?
Do you break the “unimportant” rules, like dress code?
There’s a great business book called First, Break All the Rules by Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman. And, yes, there are rules that should be broken sometimes. But when you break the rules, there must be a purpose. And that purpose must have some kind of expected payoff.
One place I definitely recommend you avoid becoming a rebel without a cause is in the “little” things. Don’t show up “a few minutes” late. Don’t wear skirts that hit well above the knee. Don’t call the CEO by his or her first name if the unwritten rule is to use more formal address. It’s the little things that make up a culture and if you ignore those rules, it is equivalent to shouting “I care more about myself than the team” or “I don’t want to be here.” This self-imposed brand will not help you when promotion time comes.