Join Australia's most dynamic and respected property investment community

The Competency Trap

Discussion in 'Living Room' started by mouseburger, 25th Jan, 2016.

Tags:
  1. mouseburger

    mouseburger Active Member

    Joined:
    20th Jun, 2015
    Posts:
    44
    Location:
    ACT
    The Downside of Being Competent
    Thought I'd share this article because it sums up why I don't work over the standard 40 hour week anymore, and because I see many business articles telling people to go above and beyond their jobs to further their careers, work more than 40 hours per week, and make themselves indispensible. While success doesn't come without effort, what these articles don't tell you is that you need to be strategic in the extra work that you take on.

    In short go getters are expected go above and beyond their work for no extra pay but it's less valued because people assume it's easier for them to do. Other people get paid the same to do less and fly under the radar. Go getters get blamed more for work problems because they're expected to fix everyone's problems - while everyone else complains that not enough is being done to fix their problems. On the plus side, the go-getters will move on to better things because they're proactive at finding opportunities.

    If you're going to be a go-getter, I'd say think carefully about what your career goals are and whether that extra piece of work you're taking on is really going to get you there or keep you down. You may get there faster if you don't have the competency trap to drag you down, as what happened to me years ago. I'm not advocating laziness, but these days the only reasons I'd work more than 40 hours is: if I ran my own business, or if there was a tangible benefit for doing so (and not just the warm fuzzy feeling of accomplishment).
     
    WattleIdo, Tyler Durden and Xenia like this.
  2. Ted Varrick

    Ted Varrick Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    21st Jun, 2015
    Posts:
    572
    Location:
    No Mans Land
    Sounds like "Bollocks", and I use the term advisedly.
     
  3. EN710

    EN710 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    18th Jun, 2015
    Posts:
    2,145
    Location:
    NSW
    Who said you can't go above and beyond within 40 hours a week?
     
    wylie likes this.
  4. Nick Valsamis

    Nick Valsamis Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    20th Jun, 2015
    Posts:
    504
    Location:
    Sydney
    Because if you are good at your job you may be given additional work which may also mean you have to work more than 40 hours.
     
  5. EN710

    EN710 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    18th Jun, 2015
    Posts:
    2,145
    Location:
    NSW
    Get more efficient and do that additional work in 40 hours :rolleyes: Take too much additional work and you'll soon no longer any good. Seen too many people burn themselves out this way. If you gives 120% each day and only recover 50%, at one point your tank will be 0 or even minus.
     
  6. mouseburger

    mouseburger Active Member

    Joined:
    20th Jun, 2015
    Posts:
    44
    Location:
    ACT
    Don't worry after you finished that additional work, you'll be given more work - usually because of the coworkers who can't get their work done because they don't pull their weight:rolleyes: And why should they when someone else has to pick up the slack for them? Which is why it pays to be strategic about taking on extra work and deciding what will help you meet your own goals. There's only so much extra work 1 person can take on by themselves and it's why I'm selective about what to "go above and beyond" with. I don't enable leaners.
     
    Last edited: 26th Jan, 2016
  7. EN710

    EN710 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    18th Jun, 2015
    Posts:
    2,145
    Location:
    NSW
    Even in normal situation work usually never finish, so you'd need to decide when to stop working on the day.
     
  8. freyja

    freyja Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    18th Jun, 2015
    Posts:
    149
    Location:
    Sydney
    I like this! We need to consider what is important/essential and drop the 'stuff' that doesn't align with our goals. Personally, I'm setting 3 goals for myself and 3 priorities for my team this year and that will be our focus.Otherwise too many things come up and we run ourselves ragged and end up doing nothing properly.

    Exactly! Time is a limited resource. Select what is essential, do it, and drop the 'fluff'. I'm determined to do this and make sure I get enough sleep instead of burning the midnight oil.

    I have also streamlined my life in this way. Decided what was truly important and meaningful and dropped all the non-essential. Some changes were I stopped facebook and playing Candy Crush (was wasting too much time on it!), stopped watching TV etc which freed up more time for exercise, meditation, sleep etc which were more important to me.
     
    mouseburger and WattleIdo like this.
  9. luckystar

    luckystar Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    8th Nov, 2015
    Posts:
    56
    Location:
    nsw
    I recently resigned from a company I worked for 2 years.

    We were contracted to a education outfit that had a bad run with a previous manager.

    Anyway after 1 year I resolved the relationship and doubled the business, then the internal promotions came pouring in, but all they were, was a lot more work load for a touch more money. So not worth it.

    So I declined all of them and Instead I stayed on with the original client as they were so good to me.

    In the end the company I worked for started to force more work on to me anyway as they were so under resourced with many incompetent staff and I eventually quit. But the kicker was the client set me up with work that would deliver 5 months salary in 4 weeks worth of work.

    Lessons learned is to choose carefully how hard you work - for who- and always have an end result in mind
     
  10. Perthguy

    Perthguy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    23rd Jun, 2015
    Posts:
    4,757
    Location:
    Perth
    Done it. In a previous job, I was really good, naive and so, so smart! :D I got a lot more work done that anyone else. I liked the work and I was good at it. I didn't understand why everyone else sat on their work. It thought they were lazy. lol.

    My reward for being productive was to be given more and more work. A normal workload was 30 to 40 files. I was given 80+. The interesting thing was that when I was productive, they were happy to give me more work but when I was drowning, they were not prepared to reallocate my work to other people. I ended up with more files than the team of 5 people next door.

    Because I was competent and took my job seriously, all of this was very stressful. I ended up with high blood pressure and stressed out of my mind. I got sick and didn't recover. I was diagnosed with post-viral fatigue and didn't fully recover for more than a year. After all that, I found a different role in a different area and my transfer got blocked. I wasn't impressed. Looking back, I can see my co-workers were not lazy at all. They were a lot smarter than me. :)
     
    EN710 and ellejay like this.
  11. EN710

    EN710 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    18th Jun, 2015
    Posts:
    2,145
    Location:
    NSW
    Oh what?? Your employer blocked your transfer?
     
  12. Perthguy

    Perthguy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    23rd Jun, 2015
    Posts:
    4,757
    Location:
    Perth
    Yes. After all the problems in that section, which went on for almost 2 years, I was interviewed for a different role in another section. I was selected and offered the new position. The boss of my section then told me I would not be able to move to my new position. I had a number of meetings about it and ended up negotiating that I could move, but not for more than 3 months. I wasn't impressed.
     
  13. EN710

    EN710 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    18th Jun, 2015
    Posts:
    2,145
    Location:
    NSW
    I'd be tempted to give them the finger and quit right there :eek:
     
  14. Perthguy

    Perthguy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    23rd Jun, 2015
    Posts:
    4,757
    Location:
    Perth
    Less than 12 months out from long service leave. But yeah, the thought crossed my mind. More than once. :)
     
    EN710 likes this.
  15. EN710

    EN710 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    18th Jun, 2015
    Posts:
    2,145
    Location:
    NSW
    Well, did you take your long service and gave them the finger? :rolleyes:
     
  16. Perthguy

    Perthguy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    23rd Jun, 2015
    Posts:
    4,757
    Location:
    Perth
    Na. My new position was awesome. Great boss, reasonable workload, interesting work. It was interesting because my first degree was I.T. I remember going to lectures about business process engineering and thinking that I would never actually do that. Part of the great job that I got was... business process engineering. It was really interesting work too. I have documented business processes in the past but never set them up from scratch. That was a sweet gig. I miss that job at lot but it was a limited term contract :(
     
    mouseburger likes this.
  17. MTR

    MTR Well-Known Member Premium Member

    Joined:
    19th Jun, 2015
    Posts:
    7,468
    Location:
    Perth, Melbourne, USA
    Looks like I have failed, I like to party, I like to watch TV, no mediation, always stay up late.

    MTR:)
     
    Xenia and freyja like this.
  18. Perthguy

    Perthguy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    23rd Jun, 2015
    Posts:
    4,757
    Location:
    Perth
    You could be my twin sister... :)
     
    MTR and EN710 like this.
  19. EN710

    EN710 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    18th Jun, 2015
    Posts:
    2,145
    Location:
    NSW
    Each to their own @MTR, especially on enjoying your life ;) I couldn't do without some Netflix and tv. I play candy crush in the train as nothing else to do. Not like I can exercise in the train (luxury of actually having time!)

    Not a party person, prefer to walk with my dog or watch tv. Always stay up late because not enough hours in the day. Wake up early for exercise...
     
    mouseburger and MTR like this.
  20. Bayview

    Bayview Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    22nd Jun, 2015
    Posts:
    2,716
    Location:
    Mornington Peninsula
    Having been an Employee and an Employer; I would always advise an Employee to try to be as good as they can be; look for things that need doing before being asked; use your initiative to improve your productivity, your time management and efficiency; think like the Boss and try to look for ways to improve the business for him/her/them, and try to be a quick learner.

    You do not have to work more than your allotted paid hours; but arrive on time or even a few mins early; work steadily until the end of your allotted time.

    All Bosses like these types of employees, and most will treat them well. Some won't and they are the losers who will never keep good staff.

    All this only applies if you are interested in climbing up the ladder in your organization, or interested in keeping your job.

    Folks who don't have any interest in the two points above may find themselves on the short list to go if things go south.

    It may happen that you get on the short list of redundancies even if you do all of the above; but it might pay to give yourself every possible chance of being retained.
     
    Adele and geoffw like this.