1. Don't quit in a huff
There is no need to quit your job just because you feel you need a change.
Aman Sharma (name changed on request), 29, an assistant manager at one of the leading call centres in Mumbai, learnt his lesson in time. Or just about .
"I job-hopped a lot in the first three years of my career," he reflects. "Based on my experience, my advice is: Do not jump too much .
"Firms who look for stability and continuity (and they all do) will not touch you. People invest money in training you. They need experts in a given field .
"It is not fair to jump elsewhere. You must stick around so you can show 'stability' on your CV."
2. Don't be 'merely' functional
Which is not to say that you must stop functioning.
Says Kaushik Gupta, a human resources consultant based in Bangalore, "Don't be merely functional in your career. You must understand the business. Unless you know your business and what your industry is about, you cannot do justice to your firm. Help your firm grow."
Find out what is going on in allied sectors.
Gather new ideas and try to implement them in your own firm, if possible.
3. Don't get complacent
A false sense of complacency could be your pink slip.
Kaushik Gupta agrees, adding that the fear of obsolescence has to be the driving force behind your career.
And the only way out of complacency is to keep constant track of what others are doing in the same industry or in allied sectors, and to try and beat them at it.
4. Don't play foul
Ethics, fair play, justice and so on are not just words in the idealists' dictionary.
They ought to be a part of your working manual. So...
~ No lies.
~ No exaggeration about your own skills.
~ No downplaying of a colleague's credentials.
~ No claiming credit for someone else's work.
~ No bribing.
No one forgives foul play. No one keeps mum about it.
Once word gets out in the market that XYZ has been playing dirty with someone else's career, you lose the respect of your team, and perhaps the organisation.
Besides, other professionals will be wary of hiring you.
5. Don't work like mad
No, really. Don't.
Your health and your family need you to take breaks.
There's no point having a pile of money if you don't have anyone to spend it on, nor the good health to enjoy it.
Kaushik Gupta recalls his own experience. "I used to be a workaholic. Then, I had a slip disc. I was forced to live off my savings while taking a six-month break, wondering if I'd be normal again. I did a lot of thinking about life and what it means.
"In my last firm, we organised a lot of events and outings for employees. We also got families along. We make sure people are chilled out, and in touch with their families."
So do some yoga. Dance. Go trekking. Join a hobby group. Read. Experiment.
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