When we hear the term legacy, we naturally think about someone passing away and how they will be remembered. But, what about in a business sense? If you left your job today, how would your co- workers remember you? What would be your work legacy?
This can be a little bit of a scary thought. What do your co-workers think about you? Are you the one that shows up early every day, or the person who always brings the donuts… whatever. Are you the negative voice of the office, or are you the steady, reliable one? Consider whether you have someone you are close enough to who will tell you the truth. Truthful input here can change your legacy.
I think this input can be eye opening. Are you the employee that you want to be? What can you do better? Most of the time when we talk about being a better employee we think it will only benefit our employer. The reality is, more often than not, the better the employee the happier they are and the more they like their job. People who like their job are better at it and are better team players.
We do need unbiased views of this. Think of it like a video golf lesson. Many pros videotape their golf game so they can see what the swing looks like, because it doesn’t feel like it looks. I bet most of us are the same way at our work.
I was recently talking to a friend who had been a pastor of a church plant for 5 years. I asked him if he were starting over, what would he do differently, and what would he do more or less of. What has worked, what didn’t. This is a healthy exercise we should all do periodically.
I think we should all step back and look at our job. Remind ourselves of what we used to do, and what we’ve gotten away from. If we would leave this job and start with another similar company, what are the first things we would do? If we do those things in our current job, we would probably find more success, much faster than starting over with a new company.
So, what is your work legacy? What do you want it to be? It’s never too late to be what you want to be.