101 Ways to Make Yourself Indispensable at Work: Keep Your Personal Business Out of the Office

It may be tempting to tell coworkers about the big fight you had with your spouse last night, but stop and think about the consequences before you do. How will you feel after you resolve the issue and make up with your spouse, only to have your coworkers think your spouse is the jerk you claimed he was?

What about being drawn into a personal conversation with a coworker friend in which you divulge information about your personal finances that later comes back to haunt you? Suppose your friend spreads your financial information around the office. How will that make you feel? It is a good bet you will feel betrayed, which may permanently impact your friendship and the way you treat the coworker, which in turn will affect the ability of you both to do your jobs well.

Besides losing the respect of your peers and supervisors, bringing personal problems to work creates an uncomfortable working environment for others, wastes office time, and takes your attention away from your job. Most people do not want to be pulled into the middle of someone else’s domestic problems, sibling rivalries, financial pitfalls, etc. Discussions of a personal nature have no place in the office, and neither do the bad moods and anger caused by those personal problems. Avoid projecting your mood onto coworkers and customers. Set aside your negative feelings and thoughts, and concentrate instead on the work at hand.

In addition to not divulging personal information, employees should remember that office supplies and equipment are for business, not personal use. Refrain from using telephones, copiers, faxes, and the Internet for personal business except in emergency cases (and make sure to get permission).

The time spent at work when you are being paid by an employer belongs to that employer. That means no personal bill paying, projects, telephone calls, emails, and so forth. When at work, confine activities to work-related business.

Keeping your work life and personal life separate will enhance your professional image and show management that your career is a priority.

Sometimes personal issues (family troubles, terminal illness of a loved one, divorce or separation, death of a family member, volatile disputes, and alcoholism) become an overwhelming challenge that can affect workplace performance. If you find yourself prey to an extremely burdensome problem, talk to your supervisor or a company counselor if one is available. It is crucial to get the emotional support you need so you can find a workable solution.

101 Ways to Make Yourself Indispensable at Work. 101 Ways to Make Yourself Indispensable at Work, ISBN: 9781435454323 Prepared for jhale@cba.ua.edu, Joanne Hale © 2011 Safari Books Online, LLC. This download file is made available for personal use only and is subject to the Terms of Service. Any other use requires prior written consent from the copyright owner. Unauthorized use, reproduction and/or distribution are strictly prohibited and violate applicable laws. All rights reserved.

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