Career Myths That Need To Be Debunked

Separating work fact from fiction

From a perfect job not feeling like work to working long hours equating to a promotion, there are some career myths that are getting in the way of you killing it in your career. And we’re here to debunk them once and for all.

Working long hours = promotion

Being on a first-name basis with the cleaners because you’re at your desk at ungodly hours isn’t a natural path to being promoted. It could actually be a red flag that you’re not using your time during the day efficiently enough that you have to stay back all the time. Use the quality of your work to help you nab a coveted promotion not what time it is.

The perfect job won’t feel like work

the office mondays GIF

With the rare exception of being employed to oil Chris Hemsworth’s abs on a daily basis, it’s only natural that work – even if you love it – will feel like work at times. Often people use the fact they should be bouncing out of bed to get to work every day as a litmus test as to whether it’s the right career for them or not. As with anything in life, it’s important to remember that work will naturally have its ups and downs. While there may be days where you marvel at how you got so lucky to be doing what you’re doing, there are going to be days where your boss will seriously get on your nerves or an annoying client will have you wanting to kill someone and that’s totally normal.

It all comes down to meeting KPIs

It’s a given that you have to meet your KPIs every year, however, if you want to get ahead in your career you have to look beyond just ticking the boxes and start doing more than what’s expected of you. This means having the initiative to look beyond your job scope and putting your hand up to take on a new project or fix a problem that no one’s been bothered to deal with. It’s this that will get you noticed at work.

You have to stay in a job for a set amount of time

computer job GIF by ABC Network

Gone are the days where you had to stick it out for a year or two in each role you had. These days, everyone’s careers are a lot more fluid which means that sometimes a particular job may have simply run its course and it’s time to look elsewhere. That said, it’s important to give every position you have a fair go and not just run at the first sign of any difficulties.

Being available all the time makes you valuable

Someone wants to “pick your brain” at 5.30pm on a Friday afternoon? Of course, you can. Colleagues always ask you for help with something even when you’ve got a million things to do? All the time. The thing with being available for absolutely everything is it starts to paint you as a readily available resource which instead of making you valuable (which it really should) just compromises your ability to do your own job. This isn’t to say that you shouldn’t be a team player, but that you should be more mindful of the fact that it’s okay to say no at times. Being a little more assertive in what you have the capacity to do can, in turn, start to make people appreciate it more when you do take time out of your day to help them out.

Hard work will equal a raise

Pay Me Stephen Colbert GIF by The Late Show With Stephen Colbert

In an ideal world simply working hard would inevitably lead to a raise. The reality though is that you often have to be proactive about getting a raise and not just sit back and wait for it to happen. Make a point of setting aside time with your manager to discuss a pay increase and come armed with a compelling case as to why you deserve it. While you most definitely have to put in the hard work, giving out raises probably isn’t at the top of your boss’ priority list so you have to make take matters into your own hands and bring it to their attention yourself.


Words by Tania Gomez

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