Professional behaviour is important in the workplace
Many employers take basic professional behaviours for granted, so you may not be given guidelines in your job contract. There are, however, a number of essential points which you should consider when thinking about how you conduct yourself at work:
Be respectful – it is important to be polite, courteous and considerate of colleagues and everyone with whom you come into contact
Make sure you are prepared whenever possible – if you are going to a meeting with colleagues, check the topic and work out what questions might be directed your way, or if there are materials that you might be asked to distribute
Reliability is important – you are more likely to be given important projects which will help to advance your career, if you have proven that you can be depended upon to complete them successfully
Pay attention to your personal presentation, and dress appropriately for your workplace. If you are not sure about the dress code, ask!
Be punctual, whether arriving at work or turning up to a meeting
Have a positive attitude to everything you do – if you are pleasant to be around then people will enjoy working with you, and want to collaborate with you on future projects
Be honest. If you do not think you will meet a deadline for a project, better to say so early and help by thinking of possible courses of action with your manager
Do not be afraid to use your initiative. For example, employers will appreciate being given forewarning of any possible issues so that they can be addressed before they become problematic for the organisation
If you have made a mistake, acknowledge it, apologise to those affected, and learn from it
Always recognise the contribution made by others – you should never take credit for work that you have not done
Respect the privacy of anyone who shares information with you in confidence - discretion is expected and always appreciated by employers
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Featured image: Christina @ wocintechchat/Unsplash
Read our resource on careers in teaching and education based on advice from geographers working in the sector
Andy Murdock was a panel member in the online discussion ‘Geospatial skills and continuing professional development’ at the AGI’s annual GeoCom event in November 2020
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