5 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Be Perfect At Your New Job

By Janek Godlewski

March 6, 2015   •   Fact checked by Dumb Little Man

I had no experience when I was hired for the first time as a copywriter. My boss decided to give me a chance. I had no skills or knowledge, except how to write correctly in English.

I was so nervous about losing this job! I thought, “If I’m just good enough, they will fire me. I need to be perfect.”

People want to be perfect because they are sometimes convinced that their own skills and potential are not enough. Here is what I’ve learned on the subject of perfection at work:

1. You don’t need to be an expert

When I started my job, I was worried that I could be replaced by someone more experienced. I was concerned that I couldn’t offer my company all of the skills they required. After some time I finally understood that it doesn’t work this way.

I learned that it is not about achieving great goals immediately. Sometimes the most successful professionals couldn’t do it all right away. It is about trying, learning, developing, and not being afraid of your ideas. Keeping that in mind, you too can be an expert after some time.

2. You don’t need to be perfect

For the first few months I was working slowly and reluctantly. My biggest block was that I would write something average, and think that if only I had created a masterpiece that brought us an ocean of traffic to boost our SEO, I will get respect from my colleagues and boss.

I once stumbled upon a Steven King quote: “Amateurs sit and wait for inspiration, the rest of us just get up and go to work.” I suddenly realized that I’m at work, not in a poetry competition.

It’s great when we can achieve something big, but it is not about creating just one masterpiece. We need to produce a large volume of quality content and hopefully some of these will prove to be a hit. Just work hard and be patient – you will see results.

3. You don’t need to know everything

The first time I tried to learn details of copywriting, SEO, and content marketing, I was petrified. It was a bottomless pit, an endless labyrinth of websites with tips, tricks, case studies, videos, and interviews. I thought I would never manage to learn everything!

I haven’t learned everything and I never will, but I’ve learned a lot things that are important and practical. I promised myself I would research only the things associated with my current tasks, and not go any further at that time. I save other content in my bookmarks file to read in a designated two hour window on Tuesdays. This has been working for me, making me more self-confident and helps me avoid unhealthy information overload.

4. You don’t need to pretend that you are busy all the time

I felt a huge compulsion to show everyone in the office that it was the best decision ever to hire me. I worked hard, and when I was tired, overwhelmed, or even during my lunch, I was still working. When I was so tired that I couldn’t think straight anymore, I pretended to be busy.

If you act like I did, please stop right now! This strategy leads nowhere. The key is to know when you’ve truly worked enough, and when you need to devote more time to your assignments.

5. You shouldn’t keep your ideas to yourself

At the start of my new job, I was convinced that I had absolutely no right to take part in meetings or discussions. I didn’t feel like I was a full-fledged part of the company yet because I didn’t know much about it. I decided to not take part in discussions and now I can see that it was a big mistake.

Although I didn’t know many details about strategy, plans, or duties, I nevertheless knew or at least surmised some things. There were some points of strategy I didn’t agree with and some ideas I wanted to share. One day I finally decided to speak up at a meeting and it turns out that my idea was correct!

Never be afraid of having your own opinion. If your suggestion is good, your firm will utilize it and you will gain professional recognition and personal satisfaction. If not, don’t take it personally. Decisions are made based on business, not your personal value or character. Keep thinking, share ideas, and discuss with your colleagues.

I hope this article encourages you to start your new job without too much anxiety! Have you had similar concerns about starting at a new company, or other work-related fears? Don’t hesitate to share them in the comments below!

Janek Godlewski

Creative writer at www.timecamp.com. Jan writes about productivity hacks, self-growth, time tracking and project management.

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