Monday, June 11, 2012

Watch Your Mouth

Watching your mouth can be as difficult to do figuratively as it is to do literally.

Guess what? I finally got hired for that job I originally applied for a year ago.

Honestly I think that the timing is better now anyway. Last year I was feeling pretty negative about my job and I was anxious to leave. At some point I got it in my head that I have it pretty good and that I'm lucky to work where I do. The right time to leave a job is when you still like it- it helps you feel like you have options, and it prevents you from burning your bridges.

But what I want to talk about today is the importance of watching what you say and who you say it to.

I have written about networking before- establish relationships at work by playing nicely with others and helping out when you can. Not only does this make your mom and your kindergarten teacher proud, but it can also help you get ahead in ways that you don't expect.

Last year the nurses in the ER were frequently floated to other floors. No one likes to be floated- you don't know what kind of situation you'll end up in and you have to work in a place that's unfamiliar. I found it as uncomfortable as anyone else, but I made it a point to show up with a good attitude and work hard. The fact is that a hospital isn't a very big place, and it's easy to get a bad reputation.

One of my float assignments was in the ICU step down unit. I got to work with another nurse who was really happy for the help. We had a great day together. Guess who put in a good word for me when I applied for a job on that unit?

My application included three references. I picked my manager and two other people that I expected to say nice things about me if asked. Later I found out that the hiring manager did not call any of the references, but did call another co-worker of mine, whom he knew from a previous job. I'm sure that if she'd said I was a lazy nurse or had a terrible attitude, I would not have been selected for the position. Luckily she said nice things about me and I got the job.

I'm an outspoken person, and I have been known to broadcast my opinion of other people and things. The problem is that you never know when that stuff will come back to bite you.

Consider this: what if I had shown up for the float assignment feeling resentful and grouchy that I had to be there? Do you think the nurse who worked there would have helped me get hired? And if the hiring manager called someone that I didn't get along with to ask her opinion of me, do you thing she would've had anything nice to say?

Anyway, I wish I could tell you that I will always say nice things to others, will never complain, and will only release positive thoughts into the universe. But that's crap- I still lose my temper and snap at my co-workers on occasion. However, the lesson that was reinforced for me this week is that having a lot of allies around you is a good way to get things accomplished. And that you never know who will be in a position to make you or break you. So be careful what you say!

So long for now, KISS (keep it simple stupid), and for Pete's sake (and yours) watch your mouth! And if you're really brave, take some photos of yourself making baboon faces and post them on the internet.

1 comment:

  1. Great message. We all need to remember and practice it.


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