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7 Deadly sins of the work place

By admin
29 January 2014

If you need to keep the job you have you need there are a few things you need to stop doing.

In South Africa’s tough job market, you might not have the job you‘ve always wanted but you know life would be unbearable without the job you have. There are bills to pay, mouths to feed and the cost of living isn’t getting cheaper.

If you want to keep your job, these are the 7 deadly sins of the workplace you need to steer clear of.

Nomsa Mpanza from Midrand has worked in human resources for almost 10 years and has seen many employees come and go for different reasons. “It’s always sad to see people lose their jobs although in many cases they should have seen it coming , all the Mondays they miss , the ‘flexi’ hours they work and the office facilities they abuse , it all adds and the saddest thing is that it’s all avoidable,” she said.

While many people lose because of retrenchment or company down sizing, your work ethic could either make you indispensable or put you on the chopping block.

  1. Being the last one in and the first one out

Being the newest employee at your company does come with its risks but the last one in first one out policy doesn’t only apply to your employment date. Nomsa says coming in late for work and leaving early could also be have a bad reflection on your employer because it’s often used as a measure of your dedication. “Coming in to work late makes you look careless and reckless and leaving early makes you seem uninterested in your job and dissatisfied. Putting these two bad habits together can not only make you look bad but they can convince your employer that you are the least productive and loyal which makes you also the least valuable and most likely to make the retrenchment list,” She said.

  1. Being the office gossip

Word on the street spreads fast but you don’t want to be the vehicle carrying it. Although it’s great to talk and be friendly with you colleagues what you talk about is also important. “Your industry is much smaller than you probably think and word that you are a gossip might spread just as fast. Aside from the fact that people don’t want to be associated with gossips , whispered stories and rumours also change and get juicier every time they’re told  and being at the end of a long line of he said she said can’t be good for your career and reputation,” said Nomsa.

  1. Being the office bully

Some people just never grow up and the biggest baby in the office is always the office bully, while their place in the company doesn’t always mean they get to tell everyone what to do but they often over step the mark and do it anyway.

“Not only does the office bully irritate the boss because they are just so bossy, but they also irritate their colleagues and often neglect their own work because they are too busy playing the boss,” said Nomsa.

Not knowing your place can put your work place out of balance and make it hard to accept orders from your superiors, this could be viewed as insubordination and a reason for disciplinary action.

  1. Abusing office facilities

Using office facilities for personal use is a big no no , especially  because things like the phone and computers are likely to be monitored . “Using the office computer to surf porn or even look for other jobs is a big mistake because even if you are using  your personal email address you privacy is not protected because anything on company computers is considered company property , this includes information ,” said Nomsa.

Using these facilities for your own benefit at the cost of the company is very similar to stealing and could be used against you.

  1. Ranting on social media

Your social media profiles are personal and shouldn’t affect your work life unless you mention your place of work or mention it in you biography or information box. Ranting about your work conditions, colleagues, and boss on social media could be considered as deformation of character or bringing the company into disrepute should the company be identifiable in your rant.

“My advice is to keep your work and personal life separate, keep your employer off your social media information and avoid ‘checking in’ to work or making your employment public,” said Nomsa.

  1. Alcohol and drug abuse

The occasional drink in the evenings or during the weekend won’t affect your work life or your relationship with your boss unless the effects of your drinking are still with you when you arrive at work. “Monday sick days, arriving at work smelling of alcohol and looking out of it are a tell tale sign of alcohol abuse and it doesn’t impress anyone. Missing work frequently without a valid reason or medical certificate are grounds for disciplinary action,” said Nomsa.