Ten Dangerous Employee Mindsets

Inspired by Jessica Hagey’s excellent post on Forbes.com, Nine Dangerous Things You Were Taught In School (but without the great graphics),  I present to you,

Ten Dangerous Employee Mindsets

(These are dangerous not only for the employee, but for the company as well.)

1. I can’t do anything that will jeopardize my job.

Yes you can.  In fact you should.  Not that you should try to get fired by any means, but you need to get out of your confort zone.  In fact, according to Richard Collin (with whom I agree) you should, “Come to work each day willing to be fired.” (slide 26)


2. My managers are right and I shouldn’t question their decisions.

View your boss as your partner.  You work as a team.  Always be willing to come up with solutions you think are better.


3. Work and play are totally different activities.

In an internal blog post I once told a company that my work is like play – it is fun for me.  Many were offended by this, thinking that meant I surf the Internet and generally goof off at work. Obviously, they had this mentality.  The more you enjoy what you are doing, the better you will be at it.  Why torture yourself for ten hours a day with something you dread?


4. I don’t like my job, but I don’t have much of a choice.

Wrong.  You are not a slave.  You always have a choice. The slave mentality is crippling.  If you hate your job (or are even just enduring it), find (or create) another one.


5. Your career advancement ends when you leave the office.

If you love what you do your work will be a part of your life, not just a workday activity.  You will read books and posts about it at other times.  You will study the principles behind your work because you love it so much.  Then you will realize the career advancement is not just confined to your current position.


6. The path to success is clear: work your way into management.

Management isn’t the only path to success.  In fact, sometimes, it is a step backwards.  I know plenty of people who step out of management for a better life.


7. Don’t rock the boat.  Keep’er steady.

If you don’t rock the boat, someone else will rock your boat and throw you off.  Time to start rock’n.  Be bold (but not toxic).


8. Your salary & job title determine your worth.

It is easy to fall into this trap even if you know this deep down inside.  In fact, it is natural.  But you must resist the urge.  Find what gives you your worth and never let that go.


9. Days at work are a pain. Days off are a relief. Live for the weekend.

Sure, some days might be a pain.  But if you are not waking up excited to get to work at least some of the days, you are doing something wrong and it is time for change.


10. The purpose of working is… Wait.  What is the purpose?

That’s right.  Find your purpose.  Make it a REAL purpose.  Not just “get to retirement.”  Change the world, or a part of it.


Work is something not to endure until retirement but should be an endeavor to improve upon the world in some small or big way – and you should enjoy it.  If you’re not, something needs to change.