When someone goes down in a spectacular way, we hear about it. When the CEO of a company loses millions or an employee attacks their superiors on social media, it makes the news and we shake our heads at what we view as plain old stupidity. But there are ways, little things that add up, that could be damaging your career right now without your knowledge! Wise up and avoid making these mistakes that could ultimately spell death to your career.
Perhaps the most damaging is the practice of over-promising what you can actually deliver. You could be fantastic at what you do but one instance of not producing what you promised can outshine all the great work. For example, missing a deadline that you stated you'd meet, even by just a little bit, can have everyone expecting tardiness. If at the start, you set a reasonable timeline for yourself and managed to deliver the work early, you'd be hailed as a wonderful employee! Make sure you keep your promises by allowing yourself the time you need to get the job done.
Settling in your job performance is another way to unintentionally kill your career. When you become complacent, you stop pushing yourself to do better. If you haven't actively sought training or learned a new skill recently, you've become complacent! The day you stop working to do better is the day you should start thinking about a career change. Keep up with new technologies, reach out to your contacts, sign up for professional development opportunities, and always challenge yourself to perform at a higher level. You'll fall behind your coworkers if you don't and who wants to keep an outdated employee on the payroll?
Falling into a constant state of negativity can signal the higher ups that you've run your course and it's time to find a replacement. A negative mood can infect everyone around you. Recognizing a perpetual state of negative thinking can be difficult but personal reflection on your attitude is essential! I'm sure you've had to work with someone who could never see the positive side of things. It's emotionally draining and not something anyone wants to put up with for long. Research is available to help you switch your thinking back to the positive, optimistic person you know you really are. Take the initiative to be that person again.
More often than not, a person's career takes a dive from a series of little actions instead of one colossal screw up. Make sure you avoid unconsciously killing your career by making yourself aware of how these and other negative actions may be affecting your work. Rediscover the passion you had when you started your career and watch it take off again in ways you thought were past you!