Make your employer your first customer

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Many employees do not interface directly with the customers of the company.

Those who do are in sales or customer service, but regularly given assignments which are to be delivered to the satisfaction the boss. In some cases, employees assume the attitude that working on, following up and completing tasks as assigned by the employer as an obligation.

In some cases employees find it an inconvenience, work place counselor Isaac Lukwago notes. “Many employees look at their work as just a routine task they have to do. They are only afraid of becoming jobless overnight and losing an income that has been supporting them and supporting their families too which is an incorrect view” he says.

However, that is not the right attitude. Resulting from such a routine and the mindset, many employees have it that employers are never fair, they are out to exploit them and get the best out of them for the least possible cost. They continue to do the work albeit carelessly to ‘punish’ the employer who is assumed to be the bad one in such a situation.

Human resource consultant Joan Nakaye says when this goes on consistently, one’s career starts to stagnate and a lot of complaints about how unfair the employer is become the order of the day.

“Employees easily forget that if there is any one being unfair in the first place it is them being unfair first to themselves by being less productive and taking their jobs for granted and in turn they are also being unfair to their employers by giving them a less than desired quality of output besides and being hardly productive in a bid to ‘punish’ the employer” she says.

Beating the cycle

Negative energy and a poor mindset is self-serving and can be difficult to overcome. Reason is it re-enforces itself with reasons, such as ‘why should I give my employer more output if they are not willing to promote me and increase my pay with what I am already offering?’ says Isaac Lukwago, a workplace counsellor.

“A lot of it is just an entitlement mindset and mentality that a number of employees come with and must be changed by the individual themselves if they are to ever see a difference in their work and career” he says.

Employees need to understand that while a basic pay for the work they offer is largely an entitlement, they are never entitled to free promotions, appreciation from the boss and pay raises for just showing up and doing the basics. “The later have to be earned,” he adds.

Thoughts in the mind are either investments or costs. Positive thoughts are investments and negative ones are costs because they actually create one’s perception of work and life in general.

Lukwago advises that workers one concentrate on feeding their minds with positive thoughts that will give them a more positive outlook towards their work and ultimately deliver the results that will please employers. The desired promotions plus pay raises will follow suit.

While one may not be interfacing with customers directly, often times we forget our supervisor is a daily customer who asks for our product or service daily through the assignments given to accomplish Nakaye says.

“The way one goes about this will determine whether they keep buying and paying for the product (output) or terminate one’s service in due time” she says. And just in case one has a boss with a bad attitude, they should handle them like a difficult customer.

Your calmness and good attitude towards them, Nakaye notes if pursued consistently, will soften them. At least they will become guilty and stop at one point, Nakaye advises.

“When they realise one is doing their work well and meeting their expectations or even going beyond them in spite of the ill treatment, they will realise they need you and cannot afford losing you. So, they will start to change and treat you better,” she explains.

WHAT TO DO

1. Behave professionally. Your workplace is not a playground, unless you are employed as a playground supervisor.

 2. Learn to take criticism gracefully. It will provide you with valuable ideas about   what people expect from you, any weak areas and what you need to work on first.

 3. Learn to do your job, and do it well. Whether it is tedious or tough and high-paying, learn how to do the job, regardless of how difficult you think it might be.

 4. Cultivate good relationships with the people in your organisation. They are the experts in their departments. Treat all co-workers with courtesy, respect and   kindness because they hold more power than you realise.

 5. Maintain a clean job performance record. Do a good job, show up on time and   keep a good attendance history.

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