Dear Working Wise:
I just started a new job as a temporary employee. I like the job and my supervisor said that some of the temp staff may be hired on full time if business picks up. Do you have any tips to help me get on full time? Signed Tenacious Temp
Congratulations on the new job! Temporary positions do sometimes lead to full-time jobs—especially when the employee demonstrates the following attributes.
o Be on time and maintain good attendance.
o Call if you’re going to be late or can’t make it to work.
o Keep your promises and complete your tasks on time.
o Be honest and trustworthy.
o Stay healthy – physically and mentally.
o Dress appropriately for your workplace.
o Keep your skills and training current.
o Double-check the quality of your own work.
o Stay organized and keep your work area tidy.
o Take responsibility for your mistakes.
o Know your job and how to do it properly.
o Respect your boss and co-workers - avoid distractions (e.g., cell phone) and side conversations during meetings.
o Avoid excessive gossiping, personal e-mails, phone calls and web browsing.
o Don’t share colourful stories from your personal life at work.
o Don’t complain about your job, boss or co-workers on your Facebook page or blog.
o Ask for help if you need it—recognizing your limits is a sign of maturity.
o Learn all you can about the organization.
o Offer your boss ideas on how you can contribute more.
o Look for things that need to be done, but check with your boss first to ensure he/she notices your initiative and agrees that it’s a priority.
o Try to make your boss’s job easier by anticipating what they will want or need.
o Learn more about the jobs of the people around you.
o Learn a skill that will help you stand out, e.g., become the department proofreader or the department expert on a specific computer program.
o Earn a new credential/license/ticket/certification that makes you more valuable.
o Ask if you don’t know how to do something. Asking shows that you want to do things right and that you’re willing to learn.
o Work safely.
Be a Team Player
o Help your co-workers with their projects if asked by your boss. You will learn something new and gain a reputation as a helpful co-worker and employee.
o Be willing to share information.
o Support and encourage your co-workers.
o Maintain a positive attitude.
o Be flexible and open to taking on new tasks and learning new skills.
o Keep learning—new skills and tasks make you a more marketable employee.
Employers want loyal, hardworking, conscientious employees. The most effective way to catch your supervisor’s attention is to bring a positive attitude to work with you.
Do you have a work-related question? Send your questions to Working Wise, at firstname.lastname@example.org. Charles Strachey is a regional manager with Alberta Human Services. This column is provided for general information.