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Resources for Young Workers

Once you’ve been hired, whether for a summer job, an internship or long-term employment, your future success depends upon your performance in your current position.

Ten Commandments for Keeping a Job

Tips to help you turn your job into the stepping stone to even more rewarding opportunities.

1. Be on time. Whether showing up for work, returning from breaks, going to meetings or tuning in assignments, make sure you are on time.

2. Call in if you know you will be tardy or absent. Most companies treat absences or tardiness much more seriously when you fail to notify them.

3. Try your best. Always finish an assignment, no matter how much you would rather be doing something else.  It is always good to have something to show for the time you have spent.

4. Anticipate problems and needs of management. Your bosses will be grateful, even if they do not show it.

5. Show a positive attitude. No one wants to be around someone who is a “downer”.

6. Avoid backstabbing, office gossip, and spreading rumors. Remember, what goes around comes around – joining in the office gossip may seem like the easy thing to do, but almost everyone has much more respect for people who do not spread stories around.

7. Follow the rules. The rules are there to give the greatest number of people the best chance for working together well and getting the job done.

8. Look for opportunities to serve customers and help coworkers. Those who would be leaders must learn how to serve.

9. Avoid the impulse to criticize your boss or the company. It is easy to find things wrong with others – it is much harder but more rewarding to find constructive ways to deal with problems. Employees who are known for their good attitude and helpful suggestions are the ones most often remembered at performance evaluation and raise review time.

10. Volunteer for training and new assignments. Take a closer look at people in your organization who are “moving up” – chances are they are the ones who have shown themselves in the past to be willing to do undesirable assignments or take on new duties.

Click to download your own copy of the "Ten Commandments for Keeping a Job."

More Online Resources

Find everything you need to know about young people and the world of work at the U.S. Department of Labor's Youth and Labor website. This site provides lots of information about working conditions for young people, including wages, laws and specialized rules for certain industries such as agriculture and entertainment. You can also find career exploration sites and education information.

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