5 Things Professional Women Never Do At Work

Habits range from big to small. Healthy to harmful. From biting our nails and grinding our teeth to something a little more indulgent, we all have them. But are your bad habits affecting your professionalism in at work?

professional habits

Below is a list of things that a professional woman who wants to get ahead and succeed in her career never does in the workplace.

She Never Ignores an Inquiry

Whether it be an email, text, Slack or DM, you are responsible for responding to each and every one. Honestly, it’s just rude not to. Someone has taken the time to reach out to you with a concern or request, so it’s your professional responsibility to respond, even if the answer is a polite, “no, thanks.” Ignoring communication in the workplace comes across as passive aggressive or even worse, lazy.

She Never Shows Up Unprepared


Look, I know “Manic Pixie Dream Girls” are adorable, but being flighty and “fly by the seat of your pants” at work isn’t endearing, it’s distracting. When you’re meeting with your fellow coworkers or a potential new client, you should have a plan of action in place, complete with deliverables. Showing up to a meeting unprepared is a lack of respect for the other person’s time and it’s pretty blatant.

She’s Not Tethered to Her Electronic Devices


It’s hard to find someone who isn’t addicted to their phone these days, but you need to know when to put the device down. For the sake of your career, I urge you to take this one seriously. The issue for most people is that the line between reality and digital is blurred; in fact, they’re pretty much one in the same. So it can be difficult to disconnect. Instagram can wait until after your meeting. Keep the phone in your bag unless you actually need it for the conversation.

She Doesn’t Refuse to Hop on the Phone for a Business Call

Trust me, I get it. Our generation isn’t fond of talking on the phone and would prefer to text or email. But in business, sometimes it’s necessary for some real human-to-human communication. Things just get sorted out quicker over the phone or in person rather than over text. Put your big girl pants on and get over your fear of talking on the phone when needed.

She Doesn’t Talk Shit About Other People

You knew this was coming, right? It’s the big one. Just don’t do it. Not only does it make you look unprofessional to your team, but it just leaves a bad taste in their mouth. As a successful, confident woman in the workplace, you shouldn’t be concerned with the doings of others. Focus on your own success and keep the water cooler gossip out of it. Better yet, make an effort to build up those around you and celebrate their accomplishments without worrying about how it reflects on your own.

It’s fairly easy to slip into any of these bad habits when you’re grinding in the workplace. However, I urge you to pay attention to your demeanor, actions and attitude and do everything you can to portray the confident, professional person you really are.


Read more professional tips: How I Switched Jobs In The Middle Of The Pandemic and 5 Goals That Will Help You Avoid Burnout At Work


Adapted from this post originally published in 2018.

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Author: Samantha Welker

Samantha Welker is the business manager at Glitter Guide. She has an Master's in Corporate Finance & Sustainability from Harvard Business School but prefers working in the creative industry. She also hosts a weekly business podcast for creative women called Pretty Okay Podcast. She loves spending time with her husband and her son, Rocky, in sunny San Diego. Follow along on Instagram