February 26

Coffee with Mike- Performing a Duty or Doing a Job

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I was talking with my daughter recently, my daughter owns a business and I said "Katherine, I was thinking about some things here, just just wondering how do we communicate to employees? What do I say to a US Attorney employees that's very helpful to them, and I want to run this by you as an employer. Tell me what you think of this phrase, and this is what I said: 'don't confuse performing your duties with doing your job.' She thought about that for a second, she was like, 'I like that, yeah that's really helpful!' So I want to talk a little bit about that.

 I think often we tend to think that when we perform our duties, we're actually doing our job, and our job is bigger than our duties. Here's what I mean by that: there are many people who could actually perform those duties in a competent way. But you got hired, we get hired for a job, you get hired for a job not just because you can do the duties, because you can do what's being asked, but it's the way that you present yourself. It's the way that you communicate. It's the way that you look when you communicate. It's how someone feels when you communicate to them. 

All that comes across in the job interview. So we have to remember that performing our duties is what we do to get paid, but doing our job is what creates our reputation and gives us a career. I think that's what really we want to have in mind as we get through with the holidays, and we head back to work, and, again, the workplace can be challenging right now, switching back from home to office, and those types of things that are going on with our kids in school, and all that stuff. 

We might become really task oriented and say, 'I gotta get these duties done. I've got to complete these tasks." Which is true. But also think about it's not just that you do them, it's the way that you do them, and it's how you make other people feel as you do them and when they're done.

So I want to make sure that I communicate that to my clients and I'm hoping that this is helping you communicate that to the people you supervise or to the people to whom you are supervised by. I'm just hoping that this is going to be helpful to you. The aspect of doing a job well is not just about the task, it's about being who you are. Making sure that who you are actually shines as you do what you're asked do. 

"The aspect of doing a job well is not just about the task, it's about being who you are."

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