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Five Secrets to Becoming the Perfect Employee That Everyone Wants - Part One

With ever increasing deadlines, decreasing resources, andchanging workplaces, sometimes it can be challenging to bea good employee, much less a perfect employee.  Theemployee who can rise above the everyday problems andembrace challenges will be the person that every employerwants.

The following are five secrets to being the perfect employeeeveryone wants:

1. Respect.  Respect others with whom you work everyday.What is respect?  Respect comes in many different forms.The following are just a few examples:

  • Respect fellow employees as individuals with unique ideasand thoughts that may be different from yours.  Thisdiversity of ideas may seem a little different at first, but thatis how we produce better solutions.  “Group think” oftengets you nowhere fast.  Embrace diversity of thought so thatyou are open minded for better solutions.
  • Respect fellow employees by greeting them in the morning.Many times I hear from employees who say that certain co-workers make it unpleasant in the office because they seldomsay “Good Morning” or “Hello,” don’t smile, and are justplain nasty to fellow co-workers.  Take the time to give apleasant greeting to your co-workers even when you may behaving a difficult time.  You will be known as someone whois pleasant to work with, and guess what; more opportunitieswill come your way.  Also, you can break out of a bad moodand become more productive at work if you are pleasant toothers.
  • Respect the work of others.  Appreciate the time andefforts of co-workers and let them know.  You may not agreeon the final product, but you can respect the time and effortput into the project.
  • Respect others by practicing the Golden Rule…well sort of.The Golden Rule states “Do unto others as you would havethem do unto you.”  Well, there are many people, because oftheir poor self-esteem, who like to be “dumped on”emotionally and physically.  If we follow the Golden Rule,does that mean that these same people should “dump on”their fellow co-workers?  Of course not!  Treat your co-workers with the utmost respect and appreciation theydeserve.

2. Knowledge.  Knowledge is the key.  The workplace isconstantly changing.  Even the look of change is changing.

Also, change is happening faster and faster.  Just lookaround you in society, work, and technology.  The only wayto master change is to gain the knowledge to be ahead ofchange.

Take the time to learn not only about your present job, butalso about your future job opportunities.  This will make youa more valuable employee.  Also, take time to learn about thejob that is one level above your present position.  When thisposition becomes available, you will be in a better position toreceive a promotion.

Also take responsibility for your knowledge.  Time and timeagain I hear the following:“Well, my company won’t pay for the class, so I’m not goingto take the class.”

I say to that, “Find the way to gain the knowledge!”  Thereare too many educational options not to have theknowledge.  Whether you pay for it yourself, receive onlinetraining, volunteer, etc., there are ways to receive knowledge.

Remember, once you receive knowledge it is your knowledgeto take anywhere you go in life.

3. Communication.  Communicate, communicate, andcommunicate.  Talking is one half of the communicationprocess.  Listening is the other and sometimes the mostimportant part of the communication process.  Listeningmeans being open-mined to new ideas.

Communication also means learning how to give and receivefeedback.  Giving feedback means giving feedback that ishonest and fair and leaves the person wanting to do better.Receiving feedback means information given to you, and itmay include questions for clarity and understanding aboutwhat needs to be done.

Communication is also good follow-up with employees andmanagement.  Do you inform your managers or co-workersabout the process or changes in the project on which youare working?

4. Appreciation.  Appreciate to motivate others.  Beaccountable for your words.  Once you say something, it’shard to take it back.

Show and give praise to others in the workplace.  Work atfinding them doing something good and praise them (Readmy article Appreciate to Motivate.).  The more you do this,the more you will tear down barriers and motivate others inthe workplace.

5. Solutions.  Be a solution creator, not a problem dictator.Anyone can find problems; but the employee who can find aproblem or challenge and create a solution is an employeethat can write his/her own ticket for success.  Take it uponyourself to be a part of the solution and not a part of theproblem.

Ask yourself these questions:* What is the positive that can come out of this challenge?* What will I learn from this challenge?* What are some solutions I can present?* How will I present my solutions so that the organizationsees the immediate benefits?

Apply these techniques and you, too, will become theperfect employee.

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Ed Sykes is a professional speaker, author, and leading expert in the areas of leadership, motivation, stress management, customer service, and team building.  You can e-mail him at, or call him at (757) 427-7032.  Go to his web site,, and signup for the newsletter, OnPoint, and receive the free ebook, "Empowerment and Stress Secrets for the Busy Professional."

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