6 behaviors highly successful people never display at work

Ever wondered how really successful people got to where they are? And what’s their secret?

While it’s true that having the right qualifications and knowing the right people do play a part in a person’s success, continued success in that role takes a bit more than that.

It’s also about how you present yourself at the workplace, and avoid certain behaviors that may cause others to perceive you differently. 

If you want to become a more successful version of yourself, remember to avoid these behaviors when you’re at work!

1) Seeking validation from others

Firstly, successful people don’t need to seek validation from others. They know what they can bring to the table and are confident in their abilities.

Seeking validation is different from asking for feedback.

Feedback plays an important role in shaping you into becoming a better version of yourself by highlighting areas that need to be improved on.

But if you’re someone who needs validation from others before making decisions, giving opinions, or submitting work, it shows that you’re someone who’s not confident in themselves. 

Others may find you insecure and incapable of making independent decisions, which can affect your credibility and overall performance. If they need guidance in the work they’re doing, they may naturally gravitate elsewhere. 

2) Bringing their personal life into their work life

Highly successful people draw a boundary between their personal and work life.

Sure, they may share snippets of their personal life with colleagues over lunch, such as what they got up to over the weekend with their family or general holiday plans.

But they rarely share further than that.

They steer away from sharing too much about their personal lives, as this inevitably may shape how others perceive them.

Of course, if you have one or two colleagues whom you can confide in, you could share a bit more.

I believe that colleagues and friends should be categorized into two separate groups. Some colleagues do enter the ‘friends’ category, but more often than not, they remain in their section.

Imagine having an ongoing family drama and confiding in your team, or your colleagues about this.

This may sound absurd, but I have met team leaders who treat their subordinates as their confidants, sharing about problems in their marriage, and issues with their children – these all become a bit much.

And it’s no wonder that they remain stagnant where they are.

Maintaining professionalism is highly important in the workplace, and ensures that others continue to respect you as a coworker and supervisor.

3) Using other people to further their success 

Highly successful people know better than to use the achievements of others to further their careers.

Unfortunately, this happens quite a lot in the corporate world.

Supervisors steal ideas from their subordinates and claim them as their own when they present these to upper management or deliver presentations with slides that were not created by them.

And they do not credit their team either.

While these people may manage to climb the corporate ladder, eventually, their lack of skills and experience will reveal itself.

After spending years succeeding based on the hard work of others, when presented with a problem that they have to deal with on their own, they may not have the knowledge to do so. 

Successful people, on the other hand, ensure that they learn and experience as much as they can, even if it requires a lot of effort and time. 

And the reason for this is because they don’t exhibit the next habit…

4) Laziness

Successful people aren’t lazy. They have their eye on the prize – the goal of achieving whatever position they’re aiming for, and then working towards it.

Even if this means sacrificing leisure time to study or finish up projects – they’re willing to do it.

Of course, different people have varying standards of success, so what’s ‘acceptable’ may differ from person to person. But overall, successful people put in the work.

And they know how to do this efficiently.

They work smart by maximizing the time spent on work – to ensure that they learn or complete tasks within the shortest time possible (without compromising on quality). 

This allows them to free up time to work on other things or to just rest.

And ultimately, people around them will also respect them for their hard work.

5) Being disrespectful to their colleagues

Another habit successful people avoid is being disrespectful to their colleagues.

They know that they can’t succeed without the help of others. And you’ll want as much help as you can.

So, regardless of who they meet at the workplace, whether they’re a high-ranking executive or someone more junior, they’re respectful in their interactions with them.

They understand that they can learn from anyone they meet. 

You’ll never know when you’ll need someone’s help. If you’re a likable person, usually, people tend to be more willing to reciprocate your kindness.

6) Being careless

No one’s perfect. Everyone is bound to make mistakes in their career. But if you’re someone who’s always careless and submits untidy work, this can affect your ability to progress.

Because if your supervisor can’t entrust you with simple tasks, they may not be confident in giving you bigger, more complex projects. 

Highly successful people are conscientious.

They are very disciplined when checking their work and ensure that it is error-free. Do this long enough and it becomes a habit, and then it becomes second nature. 

Not only will this gain the respect of the people within your department, but others from different departments as well. It’ll be clear that you’re someone reliable and can be depended on to lead and execute projects with high standards.

Concluding thoughts

While different people have varying definitions of what success is, the abovementioned habits should generally be avoided if you want to be perceived well in the workplace.

Since no one works in silos, it’s equally important to manage your relationships and how people perceive you, in addition to ensuring that you produce quality work. This helps you to gain recognition and respect within the workplace! 

Picture of Pearl Nash

Pearl Nash

Pearl Nash has years of experience writing relationship articles for single females looking for love. After being single for years with no hope of meeting Mr. Right, she finally managed to get married to the love of her life. Now that she’s settled down and happier than she’s ever been in her life, she's passionate about sharing all the wisdom she's learned over the journey. Pearl is also an accredited astrologer and publishes Hack Spirit's daily horoscope.

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