Everyone has bad habits, which develop over time at work when you get comfortable in your environment. It can sometimes happen without you even realising it. An extra 10 minutes on your lunch break here and there, leaving that little bit early or procrastinating. It happens and alarm bells may only start to ring when it’s too late. This is why it is important to conduct yourself in a professional, positive, proficient and productive manner whilst at work.

Obsessive email checking

Checking your emails 24 hours a day is a bad habit to adopt, and obsessive email checking can destroy your productivity. In order to be productive, we need periods of time throughout the day to not have our focus interrupted. Every time you check your emails, your productive flow is disrupted. Your inbox is not the be-all and end-all, and the world will not fall apart if you don’t check your emails for an hour. Try to designate certain times of the day to check your inbox and answer emails, and make you turn off your phone’s work email notifications when office hours are done for the day.

 Procrastinating with tasks

We all put off doing tough or boring tasks, whether it’s having a cheeky look through Facebook or gossiping in the kitchen whilst making your morning coffee. It’s very easy to be relaxed with certain tasks or taking breaks from it with something a little bit more fun, but it is actually hindering your productivity. Tackling difficult jobs in the morning will make things better in the afternoon, and will give you a greater sense of achievement. Delaying tough tasks can also have an impact on your colleagues and rushing things last-minute can anger them, or cause a project to fail. Start the day by writing a list of tasks, and tackle the tougher ones first.

A cluttered desk

A messy desk isn’t a good look. Nobody wants to massive stacks of paper everywhere, dozens of dirty cups or sticky notes stuck all of your desk every day. It can portray an image that you are lazy, can’t cope or are swamped with work. It’s not a good impression to give directors, clients or potential new business. If your folders are all over the place and you can’t find anything, maybe it’s time to make a change and tidy up your workspace. Keep items on your desk minimal and make sure you always clean up dirty dishes/mugs.

Spreading negativity

It’s not abnormal for people to gossip or complain in the workplace. However, constant negative behaviour can be draining and put a damper on everyone’s mood. Negativity can be contagious, so when one person is unhappy and frustrated, it can end up bringing everyone down or lead people to avoiding you. If you are feeling negative and down, try to identify what is causing you stress and unhappiness.

Being late for work

Arriving late to work, or returning late from breaks, doesn’t set a good precedent and portrays an image of carelessness towards your job. Whether it’s intentional or not, arriving late is disrespectful to your employer and your co-workers who arrive to work on time. Being consistently late can hurt your career, so try to ensure you are on time for work in the morning get up earlier and put on multiple alarms if you like to hit the snooze button.

Inefficient behaviour

When at work, employees should behave professionally and efficiently. Inefficiency can occur with bad habits such as disorganisation, wasting time and being too talkative. Everyone at your workplace, is there to work, not to socialise. Therefore, it is important to keep personal talks to a minimum and not spend too much time on non-work-related tasks.