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Battle of Old Fashioned Working Ethics vs New Generation - I Have a Right to a Job!

Posted by Belinda Skinner

about 4 years ago


Can your working behaviours and ethics prevent you from getting that new job? 

Thinking of handing your resignation in? Here is some important advice…

You are starting a new job! Congratulations… you are excited at the prospect of joining a new company, you are nervous – will you fit in and will you enjoy your new environment.

Let me give you an important, simple piece of advice… you need to make an impression! Your first 90 days are important. It is not your ‘right’ to be given a job, you need to earn it! You need to earn the respect of your new boss and new company. You need to build a good working reputation.

What do I mean by this?

How a person acts during their probation period and after resignation is a good indication on what type of person they are, what working ethics they possess – if any!

Is it me, or are the old fashioned values of ‘working ethics’ seem to be diminishing? Is it a generation issue or just pure lack of awareness? These are questions I am still trying to work out (and make me feel old in the meantime).

When conducting reference checks on potential employees (both our own internal hires and also for our clients) I ask the question how did the person behave during their resignation period or their probation period? What I mean by that, is during the probation period an employee should be giving 110% effort, they are there to impress. Of course! Pretty obvious really isn’t it!

They should be making effort to show their new employee they made the right decision: They will dress to impress. They will turn up to work early, or at least on time. They will stay late or leave at a respectable time, not when the clock ticks over to 5.30pm or 6.00pm. Sick leave won’t even be considered, they will make an effort to come in, no matter what and definitely no annual leave. So how do you feel when you have an employee who, during their probation period does not do any of the above? If this is their best, what will they be like later when they settle down? This is the worrying question.

The above points are not mind blowing, they are standard normal good working ethics, then why do so many, especially younger generation not even consider this? I feel there is a new battle of old fashioned working ethics vs new generation I have a right to a job.

Clients will say to me, “I don’t know what it is about our new employee but they just don’t seem to have the passion, they just don’t fit it” … on questioning further, the employee hasn’t given 100% during their probation period. The client feels the new employee is just not that interested. Majority of them though are not purposely behaving like this, they just don’t even consider it. This is what I mean by possessing good working ethics.

Let’s take a look at how employees behave once they hand in their resignation. Do they still give 100%, do they take on a ‘can’t be bothered’ attitude and slow right down? Do they put their head down and leave their job in a fully functional state, or do they spend more of their time wondering around the office chatting to others and surfing the internet? Are they in the office all the time, or do they start taking many sick days? Many feel they should use some of their sick leave, after all, they are entitled to these days – right? It is these behaviours that have a huge impact on the person’s working ethics.

This is a good judge of a person’s character. Someone with good working ethics will not even consider behaving this way, as it will be natural for them to give their effort to their employer.

So ask yourself, when you started your new job… how did you perform?

Next time you hand in your resignation, think how will you act during that last month or two. What will your attitude be like? A person with a poor attitude spreads negativity and that causes problems in an office – you will be remembered for that, so be careful!

These are good working ethics and it is these characteristics that determine whether you are a professional or not.

Belinda Skinner, Country Manager, en world Thailand