How to be proud of your work

“I am not going to work rest of my life in this fu***** coffee shop”, the girl said behind the counter in a coffee shop. I did not like what I did hear as a customer.

That is a hard thing to say while you are working in a coffee shop run by a young entrepreneur that runs two coffee shops and works 14 hours per day doing same thing than she did, but with quadruple speed and respect.

Why did you take the job then? Just for the money?

Coffee shop is extremely demanding job. It is not only cooking the coffee and taking the money. You should be able to build feeling around your coffee shop that people come back. I don’t go to coffee shops only for the coffee. That is the fact.

How to be proud of your work? Whatever job you have, whatever work you do, you can do it well and proudly. You can always improve and step up. I am hundred percent sure that being proud and doing job well will benefit you in a long run. It will help your career, it will help you to get new jobs and it will make you feel good if nothing else.

How to be proud of your work?

Jim, quality manager of a big company I use to work with, did tell me a story about trash man who did his job with proudness and extra twist. Jim was taking the garbage out in his bathrobe, looking probably like you have just woke up when he saw the garbage truck arriving. It was too late to escape inside.

The trash man arrived with perfectly shaped moustaches and clean overalls and tie (that’s right with a tie!) to collect the garbage. Jim was out in his bathrobe and was so surprised to see that handsome Hercule Poirot styled small man in his perfectly clean outfit.

Before Jim said anything out of his surprise the man took the garbage bag from his hand and said with smooth voice, “Thank you sir. I wish you pleasant day, sir”. And then he disappeared to the back of a truck. There he was the quality manager of big enterprise in his bathrobe, speechless about good service he could only wish his own company would have.

When we had vacation in Turkey one day we were surprised to see our beds like this.


I don’t know if it is practise setup by hotel or cleaning ladies, but it is an example of adding that small extra twist to your otherwise standard job. Cleaning is important work, but often extremely invisible. You take it granted.

Before we left there was a letter from cleaning lady thanking us for our stay and wishing us welcome next year. Again nice way to collect tip, but small nice gesture to feel us welcome as hotel guests.

What ever work you do well you can be proud of it. By adding that small extra twist to your work, you can turn standard work to extraordinary.

What is your extra twist?


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Photo Credit Flickr and John Lloyd and me.


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