Monday, May 11, 2009

rules of thumb to avoid being in DEEP SHIT at work

With my 11-month working experience, trust me when I say, the working world is cruel, inhuman, practical, and ferocious. When you're out there, you're on your own. Remember when you were in Standard One your English teacher would make you do corrections for the words that you wrongly spelled in the spelling bee. You would have to rewrite a certain word 10 times, for instance, just so you could remember it and not make the same mistakes. Remember in university/college when you did a calculation for the sizing of a vessel in an assignment and three days later you received it with a big red cross marked over it by your professor, saying that you used the wrong formula. And all you had to lose is a chance of getting an 'A' for this particular assignment and that's it. But when you're working, when you're out there, you're not allowed this kind of luxury. One single tiny mistake, it could make your company lose millions of Ringgits; it could be the end of your career; it could haunt you for the rest of your life.

Thus, it is important to know how not to get yourself into DEEP SHIT as well as how to get yourself out of it. Here are some rules of thumb that I use as my phylosophy while at work. It may not be useful for some, but for people who don't know anybetter, like me, it's a place to start.

Rule 1 : Always consult your direct superior
Do not jump status, i.e. do not directly deal with your boss' boss. Whenever you have questions, or you want to deliver your work, deal with your direct superior first. And whenever there is need to email your colleagues/clients/contractors, always c.c. your superior. This is important so that he keeps track of your progress and so that he can pull or save you out of DEEP SHIT before it's too late, especially if you're a freshie like me.

Rule 2 : Do not simply clear your inbox/outbox
Keep all your corresponding emails with colleagues/clients/contractors/boss. This is so that you can keep a record and also as proof/evidence as to what you were told to do. Also, if your colleague had verbally asked you to make some changes in your work, do insist that he send you an email and c.c. to your boss to make it official.

Rule 3 : Always be in good terms with your colleagues
You're there to work, not to make friends or enemies. Your colleagues, they're neither your friends nor foes. They're just colleagues. Be in good terms with them and it will make your life less miserable. And it wouldn't hurt to go out with them and have some fun once in a while. If there are a group of your colleagues gathering and talking bad behind people's (especially your boss') back, do not join in the conversation, and do not agree or disagree. Just smile and excuse yourself. This may save you from DEEP SHIT.

Rule 4 : Always be busy
Or at least, pretend to be. Your company didn't pay you so that you could chat in MSN, or check your personal emails, or do quizzes in Facebook. If you seriously do not have any work (especially freshies like me), do your own research. You can research about your company, the previous projects, SOP*, and many other technical information. You may not be able to learn up and absorb all of them, but it's at least better than just sitting around and making a bad impression to your boss.
Rule 5 : Ask
Whatever you do not know, ask. This is to avoid making mistakes. If you're told that the questions you ask are stupid or when there is someone refusing to answer your supposingly "stupid" question, do not get upset or put off by these people. Some people may think that they're so smart but no matter, let them think what they want. How they want to think of you is none of your business. So you might as well get on with your life. I'm sure there are other colleagues who are willing to be of help. Go to them instead. In time these people will know that you're not as stupid as they think you are.

Rule 6 : Never reveal about work-related stuff on the Internet
Do not talk about work in your Facebook status, your blog, your MSN status etc. Yes I'm blogging about work, which is why I'm being very careful. Examples of things that you should not mention on the Internet include: colleagues that you hate, bad things about your boss, things that you don't like about the company etc. You'll never know if your boss will be reading it.

There you go. These are what I can think of for the mean time. There are many more things to learn. You are welcome to add any other things or your personal experience in the comments. Good luck!

*SOP - Standard Operating Procedure


confessions of a medical student said...

haha!! not bad the tips... i could use some too, later, when i start work.. but there's one part:

Rule 4 : Always be busy
Or at least, pretend to be. Your company didn't pay you so that you could chat in MSN, or check your personal emails, or do quizzes in Facebook.

-isn't that what you sometimes do? chat on msn... hehe... *ophs*

anyway, if it'll make you feel better, if i make a mistake, i might lose a life... and that would haunt a person, for life!
working aint easy... i wonder, is there ever a second chance...

kew said...

Rule 4 : Always be busy
If you seriously do not have any work (especially freshies like me), do your own research. You can research about your company,

You should search about ur company profile....seriosuly....


Rule # 4 never applies to me coz the IT dept in my company blocked those site not allowed (norm in a MNC) & always "quite" busy (kaki & tangan terikat & mind also)

Rule # 6 - I totally breach it!! LOL (But i kept myself "safe" by adhering to rule # 1,2,3 & 5)....

btw thanks for sharing some tips....

thE gEOgrAphicAlly blind said...

norm in MNC? i don't think so... i think it depends on the company one... some MNC only block those pornographic, games, downloading sites... they don't block facebook!!!

wu shin'n>>
if i make mistakes i could cost life also... if my design is wrong the whole MOPU (mobile offshore production unit) would explode... hundreds or maybe thousands of ppl may die... depends on how serious the accident is...