Work is an important area in life to demonstrate your abilities and for many of us, it’s the area that we put most of our efforts into being great.  We do this for different reasons but often work seems to give us the most obvious rewards (most notably pay) so we want to be great.  Of course, this is valuable and here I’ll explore how strive to be great varies in our work and workplaces.  These ideas came from a podcast I regularly listen to called, The Cranky Middle Manager.  The latest podcast there covers is a discussion with the author of a book called, “Do More Great Work”.  It sounds like an intriguing book and one I hope to pick up sometime to read.  This article explores just a few ideas I had as a result of the interview in ways to look at how great we are at our work.

Your Priority Tasks

The first area is in your priority tasks. Do you really do a great job of working on the areas that are truly your most important priorities for your job?  Often we put our greatest areas into what we are most comfortable with, and those areas are not typically the most important things we should be working on.  Instead, they are often the things we shouldn’t be working on or that we are regularly distracted by.  To be great at our work, we would have to stop being so great at wasting time on distractions and instead, focusing on our priority tasks and doing them great.

Doing Your Best Work

The next area is in simply doing our best work. What are the things you are best at?  Are those really the areas that your work needs you and that you are great at in your job?  Is there a way to do the things you are best at in your work in order to be great at what you do?  We could most likely be great at our work if we able to work in an area that is truly one of our talents and where we deliver our best work.

Being Your Best at Work

What about your character?  Are you the best person you can be in your work?  Do you really want to be the best person possible at work in order to be great?  Perhaps there are things that hold you back, such as your own ego, competition, jealousy, anger and discomfort. Perhaps gossip, lies and deceit in your workplace prevent you from being your best.  Every person and every workplace has many limiting factors to face and hold them back as well. Do you let fear get in your way of being at your very best?  In order to be great at work, I think it is necessary to really be the best person we can be at our work as well.

Being Great At Your Work

Being great at work obviously requires us to put our efforts to ensure that we do the best we can, have the best fit for our talents and priority work and can deliver our work at the highest standard possible.  These things combined are what make us great at our work.  Being great at work then requires a shift to put our best efforts into what we excel at and to show excellence in our areas of talent.  We should do all the other tasks in our work that doesn’t fit those priorities and talents (including the distracting work) at a mediocre level.  These lesser areas don’t deserve nor can we expect to have the same level of excellence as we do in the areas we are great.  This, I believe will make you great at work, when you can be great at the priority areas, delivering consistently with the highest standard of excellence and simply doing just what is needed to get by in everything else.  Afterall,we can only be great by using our given talents to the best of our abilities.

“Greatness lies, not in being strong, but in the right using of strength.”
Henry Ward Beechard

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