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John Daly

Relationships

John Daly: How to Be on Top of Your Game, and Know When You’re Not

Not long ago I signed with a service provider to work with me on The Key Class. By “service provider,” I don’t mean an Internet service, but someone to help me accomplish my goals with my company.

After the first initial meetings, I was so excited and ready to go. I was given lots of ideas on what I needed to be doing ... but after about a month or so ... I realized that nothing that had been promised on the other end of the relationship was being delivered.

I had that sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach that I’d made a mistake. Another few months later and that feeling became a reality.

So rather than let it go on, I decided to own my mistake and correct it. That led to a meeting at which I determined with the provider that we both had a lack of understanding of each other’s needs. As a result, we terminated our agreement.

So onward and upward.

About a month ago, I found someone else to fulfill the services that I so desperately needed. I signed the dotted line and held my breath. Within two days, my inbox was inundated with positive accomplished tasks!

By the end of the first two weeks, this person had accomplished more than her predecessor had in three months! I was in heaven, and still am.

But, what makes the difference between someone who talks a good game compared to someone who is at the top of her game?

» Excellent time management

» Fine-tuned organizational skills

» Attention to detail

» Delivering more than is promised

» Great and continuous communication

» Providing quality work in a time-efficient manner

» Keeping a positive, upbeat attitude

» Dealing with others with respect

» Always maintaining a courteous, friendly manner in person, on the phone and via email

» Handling all issues in a highly ethical manner

» Taking responsibility for your actions

» Being a team player — there is no “I” in team

I could go on, but I think you get the picture. It’s one thing to be personable enough to win a contract with a client. It’s another thing to uphold your end of the bargain.

Whether you make that bargain with an employer or as an independent contractor, if you want to build a great reputation and assure yourself of long-term or repeat business, these are the skills to keep in mind.

Talent and skill are merely the basic price of entry. How you deliver them involves soft skills that will be the critical difference between your success and failure in the eyes of others.

— John Daly is the founder and president of The Key Class, the go-to guide for good manners and job search success. Click to learn more about The Key Class, or to buy the book.  Follow John on Facebook and Twitter @johnjdalyjr. Do you have an etiquette question? ASK John at [email protected]. The opinions expressed are his own.

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