I want to define a “normal” career as well as show you what an “average” employee looks like. My goal in writing is to show you how to get the career you’ve always wanted, not the one that comes naturally.
Based on my leadership experience, I now realize what you need to know is how to gain an advantage that everyone doesn’t have. This can be applied in almost any situation: as a volunteer, an employee, a partner, a spouse, a student or even a child.
I’m going to give you some tips on how to have an advantage that very few have.
Tip #1: Stop thinking about your career-the long term-on a daily basis. Careers are built over time. It takes a plan that you can execute daily. The distance between you and your future career is called today. “Normal” people focus on the long-term without making progress in the short-term. The uncommon see today differently; they make today count. The uncommon treat it as if it were their last and only remaining day.
Tip #2: Stop thinking of your company as an institution-something that you can’t change. If you think of the company you work for as an institution and not as a person, you’re just like everyone else. The company you work for has a name. Here I go…to the left. If your company is a terrible company, you’re really referring to a person or group of people. Think about it, there’s a person who is terrible to work with. The company’s not bad, but there is a name you can name that’s bad. Stop placing everything on the institution and place it on the who.
Tip #3: Locate your target, you’re immediate assignment. When I came to the realization that my bad job was actually a bad relationship with a person, I stopped being the victim. A victim is a person who is unable to do anything about their circumstances. Being a victim is “normal”. What’s uncommon is the person who, when circumstances seem out of their control, do something to impact their outcome. Now that I’m no longer a victim, I have a target for achieving greatness and that target has a name. That being said…what name can you use as a target?
Tip #4: Your target is the key to a better job. I bet I can anticipate your next question. Target for what?
Every job has problems that must be solved. Yours is how to change the situation between you and the person named above. What you may not realize is that your bad boss isn’t broken. They’re there because they were selected or earned it. Your job is to find out how to work for the company-this person, this bad boss. The greatest key to working is learning how to please the one to whom you directly report. If they’re happy with your work performance so is the company. Your new assignment is not to do a good job for the job’s sake, but one that’s good for the person’s sake.
Tip #5: Lastly stop being the problem. Normal employees create problems for their boss. Obviously, the way to be an uncommon employee is to stop being a problem for your boss. It’s the solution you need to have an advantage that most will never have or are incapable of achieving.
“Normal” behavior in corporate America is having a relationship that’s not great. Normal is the person who hates their boss, fears their boss or despises seeing their boss’s car when they pull up in the parking lot.
Now let me rock your world a little more…
What type of weak employee brings more problems than solutions? A normal one.
What type of lazy employee shows up just in time for their shift or afterwards? An average one.
What type of unqualified employee always brings the “why it can’t be done”? An ordinary one.
Allow me to take a liberty to speak to my fellow small ‘c’ christians.
What type of believer, adds problems instead of removing them? Christ, who is uncommon, performed miracles; He made things better for the people around Him.
What type of believer is the person who constantly complains about their job? When you didn’t have one you called this one your blessing.
What type of believer, makes work situations worse by their presence? It’s your job to be the light that outshines darkness; that’s what uncommon followers of Jesus do. The uncommon has a way of making every situation better.
What type of believer, doesn’t carry their own workload? Being uncommon by Jesus’ standards says that we should be twice as productive as our “common” counterparts.
Let’s put aside the “normal” ways and start being the people who make the biggest difference around us. Changing the world isn’t difficult, it’s just not normal. If you master these uncommon tips, there’s nothing on earth that can stop you from having a career like no one else.