Friday, June 6, 2014

open doors with your work ethic

The folks over at Webucator contacted me this week inviting me to participate in their Most Marketable Skill Campaign. They want to give back to the class of 2014 with blogs by successful professionals in a variety of fields. They are hoping that these blogs will ease the graduates of 2014 into the work force, which can be a daunting task!

Dear Class of 2014,

You did it! You've finished up your studies and are all set to go off into the workforce! There are many qualities that contribute to a successful career, but I think having a strong work ethic is at the top of the list.

No matter what field you enter, your work ethic can make, or break, your success in your field. As someone who has been in education for 11 years now, I'm at the point in my career when job opportunities come to me. I worked at Heritage Middle School for Leslie Hodes, and did my best work every day I walked through the doors of her school. I was a mentor to my team of teachers in the area of literacy - no one asked me to write lesson plans and give professional development to them, but I did it because it was good for my bottom line: student achievement. I treated my colleagues with respect and when I needed to vent, I went to a person who I knew would keep my feelings confidential: I always was professional at work. Because of choices like this, Leslie never wondered what kind of teacher I was. She knew I was the kind of person who was an asset to her staff. It was because of my work ethic at Heritage that I then had an opportunity at the University level - Leslie referred me to her colleagues at Dominican University, and now I'll be teaching graduate level courses as an adjunct professor for them. Work ethic and my desire to be a life-long learner got me that interview, not filling out countless applications!

Prior to working for Leslie, I worked for Damon Twist at Excelencia Elementary and Creighton School. Damon was on the team that hired me my first year of teaching, and he watched me grow for six years. Every day, I was there on time and I accepted constructive feedback willingly as I was the reflective practitioner who always strived for improvement. When I found something I didn't know how to improve, I enrolled in a graduate program. These actions don't go unnoticed! When I left Phoenix and moved to Chicago, it was Damon who called Leslie to tell her to hire me. She received this phone call before I even had an interview! There aren't many administrators who do things like this, but if it wasn't for my work ethic, that would have never happened.

So graduates, the advice I give to you: do your best every day you walk into your office. Present yourself professionally - at work, at happy hour, and with every interaction with your colleagues. You're always on an never know what changes will be made among your superiors, and so bad choices in front of the people that are your peers one day could be your new boss' memories just a few weeks into the future. When you do your best, it's noticed, and then the opportunities will knock on your door - opportunities that you had never even imagined!

Best of luck in your future endeavors!


Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...