As a 19 year-old entering the world of a top tier law firm in London, I was keen, excited and felt lucky that I had been hired by such a prestigious organisation. Everything was intriguing, no task was boring, I was grateful for every opportunity and wanted to learn all there was to know. I was working with some of the most intelligent people in the country, in one of the best cities in the world.
I’d had lengthy and excellent training at the beginning, and attended several refresher courses and further training sessions as time went by. But it was one seminar I attended that really stuck with me, because the Managing Partner who was presenting, addressed something that hadn’t even occurred to me.
It was the “Why Me?” attitude.
As an example, an email gets sent to all secretaries in the department wanting help. It has nothing to do with you, you have your own work to do so ‘Why Me?’ You pick up something off the printer and notice that the paper is low and needs replacing, but you have your document so ‘Why Me?’ You see a dirty glass in one of the boardrooms as you’re heading out for lunch, but surely someone else will notice?
That’s not to say that you should neglect your own job and sometimes you are genuinely busy, but I think the Managing Partner’s point was that we are all part of the same organisation and changing the ‘Why Me?’ can make an enormous difference, not only to the business but to your own career, no matter what role or organisation you belong to.