As a class was wrapping up earlier this week, a student walked up to my desk with two armfuls of stuff–backpack, computer, textbooks, notebooks, and a paper to submit. He managed to let the paper slide from his fingers onto my desk without dropping anything. I was impressed with his deftness. Then he asked a question.
“Can you write my name on the paper?”
I looked at him for a moment and smiled, “No, but you may use my pen to write your name on your paper.”
He smiled, set down some of his load, then wrote his name on the paper.
Why, you may be thinking, didn’t I just write his name on the paper for him?
Here’s one of the lessons I offer students: Make things easy for your boss.
Many people create problems for their employers. They do shoddy work, they show up late, they treat co-workers or customers poorly, they don’t care.
Employers need people who solve problems.
When you begin to develop the habits and mindset of a problem-solver, you set yourself apart and make yourself more valuable to your co-workers, your boss, your clients.
And, yes, that means writing your own name on your own paper.