How can you be awesome at your job?
That’s the question that today’s guest, Pete Mockaitis, and I tackle on the latest Afford Anything podcast episode.
Pete hosts one of iTunes’ top 10 career podcasts, called — appropriately — How to Be Awesome at Your Job.
In typical nerd fashion, I launch our interview by asking him: “What is the metric by which ‘awesome’ is determined?”
Here are a few other questions that I hurl his way:
How to Get a Raise:
Imagine that you enjoy your job; you don’t want to quit. But they’re not paying you what you’re worth. You’ve asked for a raise, several times, and they’ve said no. What do you do?
Angle for a Promotion? Or Focus on a Side Hustle?
Let’s assume that you’re employed full-time, and your goal is to make more money. What’s more effective:
[Option 1] Focus on your full-time profession, putting in the extra hours to angle for a promotion? — OR –
[Option 2] Be an average employee and focus your excess time and energy on building a side hustle?
Tough it Out, Then Retire Early? Or Not?:
You feel ambivalent about your job, but it pays well. Should you pivot to an alternate career path, even if this causes an income drop? Or should you milk the big paycheck for 10 years, save and invest like crazy during that time, and escape into an early retirement?
What nuggets of wisdom does Pete share in today’s episode? Here are six takeaways:
#1: If you want to be awesome at your job, focus on these six areas:
- Be present.
- Be deliberate about how you direct your time, energy and attention.
- Be thoughtful.
- Communicate well.
- Build strong relationships.
- Manage your career.
(We dive deeper into these points — especially number two! — in this episode.)
#2: Apply the 80/20 rule to your decisions. Ask yourself:
- What are the 80 percent of great results coming from 20 percent of my efforts?
- What are the 80 percent of negative things that I don’t like? What focused 20 percent of efforts can get rid of 80 percent of the negative?
#3: “Wastefulness comes from inefficient methods in pursuing things.”
#4: Invent what people want. Not what you think they should want.
#5: Learn the 2 questions that improve every decision: What must be true for this to be a good decision? How can I test that?
#6: How can you find happiness at work? You’ll need to be satisfied with RED: rewards, experience and demands.
- Rewards – Your compensation, security, advancement potential, and your pride in the organization and its activities.
- Experience – Your day-to-day experience at work, appreciation from others, enriching and psychologically safe environment, compelling tasks, sense of purpose, learning and growth, and autonomy.
- Demands – What are total hours needed and the flexibility of those hours?
- Lean Startup – Eric Ries
- Happier – Tal Ben-Shahar
- Stumbling on Happiness – Daniel Gilbert
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