work ethic

This is a page from my book, “A Survival Guide for New Consultants”

What an employer looks for in an employee

“There is no ‘try’”

Yoda

As a small business owner, I classify employees in three categories:

  1. If employees have basic good qualities, I’d try to keep them through good times and bad.
  2. If they were “problem” employees I got rid of them very quickly.
  3. If employees had exceptional performance, they got the big raises, and I considered them as potential business partners.

Here’s a quick look at those three categories.

Work ethic, income, advancement, and business ownership

Just saw this: “Never let your boss convince you that ‘work ethic’ is working extra hours for free. It’s the same as writing a check to the business owner.”

Technically that’s true, a good observation, and I can’t argue with it.

Conversely, when I got out of college, my wife’s grandfather told me the phrase, “If you do more for what you’re paid to do, you’ll eventually be paid more for what you do.” As an employee, I made a lot of money with his philosophy, rapidly doubling and tripling my income.

Later, as the owner of a small business, I didn’t mind it when employees didn’t work overtime – and we always paid for overtime. I respect people who want to work forty hours a week and have a balanced life. But I also knew that those people would never become partners in our business. I never thought of it as good or bad, just a fact of business life.

“Shut your mouth, work hard”

“Shut your mouth, work extremely hard and be the first one in there, last one to leave, and to lead by example.”

Denver Broncos QB Chad Kelly, talking about the advice he got from his uncle, Hall of Fame QB Jim Kelly.