Let’s say you’re working on a project and something goes wrong. How do you proceed? Do you keep try to salvage what you have? Or do you go back to your last known good? That’s the best time to assess the situation and figure out what sort of mess you’re in. If you can easily undo and keep the project going, great, otherwise maybe the project wasn’t viable from the beginning and it might be time to restructure it to be better than it was before. Don’t be afraid to start over if it’ll ultimately serve the customer much better.
Professional collaboration is just a matter of coming to terms with one’s weaknesses and asking others for help. The concerns are twofold: bugging people and not retaining the information. If you’ve done sufficient research – at least five minutes on the topic – then it’s perfectly acceptable to ask about a question, even if it’s very similar to what’s come up before. It’ll help reinforce the knowledge. Just recognize when people are busy and not. Most people don’t mind helping if they’re not busy, so be polite, and write everything down or recreate it later. Don’t be afraid to ask for help!
You might think it’s better for the customer to work through your lunch or take your lunch break once all the dust is settled. The dust never settles. At most, you could maybe delay your lunch by five or ten minutes. Anything more than that will probably negatively impact you more than it will positively help out even the most desperate customer. So set a schedule and let everyone know.
When I’m sick, it’s like I’m at half speed. No energy. No drive to create anything creative, no coherent thinking, and no certainly motivation to do anything functional. Thursday afternoon, I noticed a bit of a sore throat. Friday morning, I was already in the thick of it. No room for days off on this project, so I showed up and did my best, even though it was perhaps clear I shouldn’t have been there at all.
We tend to get wrapped up in our own selves both in work and life itself. We focus so heavily on the work that we’re doing that we may forget that there are others in our group that are struggling. There’s one question above any other that will help propel you from where you are now to where you want to be…
When you have a backlog of work and there’s still a great deal ahead, while it’s important to keep a thorough list of everything you’re working on or planning to work on, you should also “get rid of the dones.” While that also sounds like getting rid of the “dunces” or dumb things, it’s more widely reaching than that:
Work with such tenacity that your quality of work is still better than your peers even when you’re not working at your best. How do you do that?