3 Workplace habits that can shatter your morale as a contract worker

By Courtney Jones

When you’re on a short term contract, you’re probably trying to make the best impression possible in hopes it may get extended. Of course you are, we all seek security. But sometimes bad habits have the propensity to inadvertently develop, making good impressions in the short-term that aren’t really sustainable in the long run. Here are three of the top ones we know you should definitely consider breaking:

Over-explaining yourself

Hands up if you have ever talked in circles about something until you actually no longer believed yourself, or could remember your initial opinion. We’ve all been there. You know, like when someone is already agreeing with you about something, but then you keep telling them why they should? And then you add in more pieces of information and start tripping over your words and then get even more emphatic to counteract the fact that you are aware that you’ve now started to sound like you’re nervously repeating yourself? Like we did in this paragraph? Yeah. Don’t do that. If you don’t have confidence in your ideas, who else will?

Not speaking up in meetings

The only thing worse than talking too much is not talking enough. Too many of us coast through a meeting without speaking up because we think a bad idea is worse than no ideas. That's a definite misconception. Trust us. Showing up without contributing any thoughts or ideas is just as bad as showing up without a pen and notepad. (Don’t ever do that either.)

Taking on more work than you can handle

It’s really hard to say “no” as a newcomer to a workplace. You want to show initiative, but you also can’t bite off more than you can chew.  But do you know what’s even harder to say? “I haven’t finished that yet, I’m sorry. I was working on something else” or “I haven’t had the time to touch that yet.” When you over extend yourself, that’s the road you’ll be headed down. Instead, say “I'm happy to do this if there’s something else on my list that I can bump down while I'm working on it!” This way your reputation won't be as someone who isn’t reliable. You don't want to be relied on to be the unreliable one.

There are ways to show initiative and still not bog yourself down. As a talented contract worker, there are always available opportunities, don’t miss out on one that can lead to your dream career.

by Courtney Jones

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