Good Employees


You will likely have a paid job sometime in your life. 

While I have been self-employed in the building trades for many years of my adult life, I have also been an employee for several companies or organizations. In my life, I have been: 

a carpenter, shingle-roofer, concrete worker, mobile home builder, metal shop worker, hospital cleaner, meat cutter, encyclopedia salesman, door-to-door spice salesman, insurance salesman, 18-wheeler truck service mechanic, 5th wheel RV builder, gas station attendant, hardware store clerk, farm worker, tube irrigation worker, and several temp-day-jobs, from painting walls in a soda-pop factory, to repairing a country club swimming pool, to chinking-in gravel for underground sewer pipes. And I have worked as a maintenance man and as a facility manager for larger organizations. 

Over the years, I’ve had a lot of bosses, a lot of co-workers, and several subordinate co-workers that I directly supervised. Here is a list of things we need to do, to be good employees, so the customers buy repeatedly from us, 
so we can continue in business. 

 1) Tell the truth all the time. During the hiring process, don’t say you can do something you’ve never done. Instead say,
    “I’m sure I could learn to ___________with a good mentor.” 
  2)Tell the truth, carefully, if a problem arises at work. Tell on yourself as is fair,
     but tell on others in a way to minimize how bad you make others look, unless there is abuse or deceit involved. 
     A good way to talk about a problem is to say, “Here is what I remember seeing………” 
3) Work safely. Don’t violate OSHA or company safety practices even for a supervisor. 
     If that causes problems, then problems need to come to light. 
4) Be on time, and finish at the expected time, if reasonable. 
     There is seldom a good reason to be late for work. If need be, leave home earlier than usual to arrive on time. 
     If you work every Saturday, Friday-night parties will cause problems. 
     It’s a good idea to be in bed 10 hours before you are due to arrive at work, and try to be a little early to the job. 
     
5) Being on time requires reliable transportation. 
     This means different things. Some will walk or cycle, some drive, and others will take the bus. Plan accordingly.
     And if your job is driving, remember that speed limits are a part of job safety.
6) Work all the hours you are being paid for, and use your breaks to really refresh yourself. 
7) Work diligently, and forget that you have a cell phone, unless there is an emergency.
8) Look for free training opportunities that can make you better. 
    This may be classes that your company offers, books from the library, or even YouTube videos.  Be better tomorrow 
    than you were yesterday. And be open to training to learn a new job elsewhere in the company.  
    This can mean volunteering for overtime for a different department and learning new skills in the process.
9) If you really don’t like your job, ask yourself and others why. I really enjoy working, though I don't like every part 
     of every task. I began working part-time outside the home at nine years old, mowing, while having livestock and
    gardening chores at home. I am now 60-some, and still work regularly. But yes, I have had jobs I really disliked. 
     Work can be a major source of satisfaction, but anyone determined to hate every kind of work, 
     will likely have a miserable, whiney life.  And this includes homemaking. 
10) Promote your employer's business away from work. 
      Too many people talk bad about their employer, then are surprised when the company folds and they lose their jobs.
      Wow.  Instead, speak positively about your employer to the people.  
      Example: If I worked for a company that made fish hooks, and since I like BBQ, I would wear my employer’s t-shirt 
      to BBQ contests, since a lot of people that like BBQ, also like to fish. 

Eric J. Rose
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