This is Part 2 in a multi-part series on the idea of “attention to detail.”
Part 1, The Importance of the Phrase “Attention to Detail,” can be found here.
Below, I offer Tip #1 of a list of 10 of my favorite little tips and tricks for making sure the important stuff becomes second nature for you in the working world.
THE FULL PINT
The entirety of this post…
When you pay attention to detail in a professional setting, you become a top contributor almost instantly. Why? Because you take care of all the things in your job that you can control, from organizational skills to attire to interpersonal skills and much more, which allows you and your manager to then focus on developing bigger picture skills that elevate you more quickly.
HOW TO PAY ATTENTION TO DETAIL
(Disclaimer #1: I consider myself to be someone still trying to “make it,” so these tips and tricks should be viewed merely as my personal ways for making sure I pay attention to detail that I believe can apply to others. If you have other tips, I’d love to hear them in the comments or via Twitter, Google+ or email.)
(Disclaimer #2: Some of these will strike as you “duh” things to do. Some of them will make you say, “No kidding. We all know that.” But that’s the point. These are the things that SHOULDN’T be groundbreaking…but yet somehow slip through the minds of entirely too many people. If you say to yourself, “I knew that already,” that’s great! But be sure you DO them already too…)
1. Bring a pad of paper and pen to every meeting.
This accomplishes three things that are invaluable to your career.
First, you appear to be someone who pays attention. Look, we all let our attention slip from time to time, but we can’t come across as lazy. When you sit there, arms folded, staring straight down, or (worse) staring at your laptop while someone is speaking, it does terrible things to how you’re perceived.
Second, writing something down helps you remember better than typing something. (Here’s a quick article that talks about a 2011 study discussing as much.)
Third and finally, when you show up with a pad of paper and a pen, it helps you immensely in following through with any actions required after the meeting. This can be anything from scheduling a meeting with someone to taking care of that thing you just remembered thanks to something discussed just now.
Bring a pad of paper and a pen to every. Single. Meeting. (Meeting = you + at least one other person.) Seriously. Do it!
You’ll be amazed at how that helps you maintain your professionalism and stand out.
In the next post of this series, I’ll go into Tip No. 2 for helping you make “attention to detail” your personal credo.