10 Unprofessional Habits That Can Cost You Your Job

A lot of people get fired because of how they potray themselves in the work place. You can be uncivil without meaning to. A single bad habit is not likely to get you fired immediately, but the cumulative effect of the bad habit over time can.Β We all have bad habits. Perhaps you procrastinate, gossip, or lack punctuality.Β  These negative behaviors don’t necessarily make you a terrible person, but as an employee they can reflect poorly upon you, and even cost you your job.

06 Sep 2012, New York State, USA --- Black businessman sleeping at desk --- Image by Β© Peter Dressel/Blend Images/Corbis

1. Poor Time Keeping Management.

If you constantly arrive late to work, or return late from breaks, it displays an attitude of complacency and carelessness. So be prompt or even a bit early to show that you are time conscious and that you do care about your job and other people’s time, as well.

2. Poor E-mail Communication.

This can involve everything from not responding to e-mails to not being aware of how you come across in an e-mail. Β You might be perceived as abrupt or rude, or too long-winded or wordy. If you have a bad habit of taking too long to check or respond to e-mails, you could miss important meetings or deadlines, cause delays or confusion, or come off as unprofessional.

3. Procrastination.

This bad habit can seriously hurt you in a work setting. Β If you’re one of those people who believes that you do your best work at the last minute and put off projects or assignments until the day (or hour) before they’re due, you may not be aware of the impact your habit is having on your co-workers.

4. Lying.

Misrepresenting your credentials or intentionally plagiarizing, lying on time sheets or billable hours, misusing expense accounts or abusing company credit cards,Β stealing the kudos for a co-workers’ accomplishments, or otherwise robbing your employers blind can all cost you your job.

5. Social Media Addiction.

The habitual obsession that many employees have with social media, cost a lot of people their jobs. If you said going on Facebook 20 times a day doesn’t interfere with your work, you’d be lying. Some companies have taken measures to monitor or limit their employees’ social media use, while others have blocked these sites completely.

6. Poor Grammar.

Honestly when you hear someone using poor grammar, slang, or profanity, it translates into believing that person to be uneducated. Remind yourself that you are not at home, or speaking with friends at a social gathering.Β  Be on point by always assuming that your boss is in earshot.

7. Too Much Independence.

Have a habit of always wanting to do things on your own? That won’t work in the office. While independence is good in some situations or when concentration is needed to get a project done, generally people who are team players experience more success at work.

8. Temper Tantrums.

If you lose your temper, it is assumed that you cannot work well under pressure or handle responsibilities well. Practice stress reduction techniques like mediation or deep breathing exercises, and never bring personal problems to work.

9. Inefficiency.

Bad habits like disorganization, wasting time, and being too talkative can make you an extremely inefficient worker. You may not realize it, but many of your co-workers are there to work, not socialize, and they may not want to be rude to you by breaking off from personal conversations.

10. Inattentiveness.

If you’re always distracted, a bad habit that plenty of employees possess, you might fail to properly assess the culture of the workplace, which can be damaging to your career. Β Each workplace has its own culture and style, whether it’s the official or unofficial dress code, the social atmosphere, or the official and unofficial hierarchy. Failure to observe the culture and fit in can create tension or mark you as different, and potentially less desirable.

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