I make sure that I thoroughly do what the task at hand is and make sure that I don't just go through the motions. I am an educator, so I will try to anticipate every possible scenario I may encounter in the classroom during a lesson, and try to have it all mapped out completely. I try to add something fresh every time I teach a topic in biology or zoology. I take pride in my work and although I have been teaching for so long, I realize there is always something new to learn and explore.
Through my teaching experiences, I learned that preparation is the key to success. The students know immediately if the instructor is not prepared. Every class is different, so the teacher can not prepare across the board. Some teachers will say that they have taught their subject so long that they could do it in their sleep. If one talks to the students in their classes, that is exactly what the students (sleep) are doing while those instructors drone on. Creativity through preparation will keep the students on their toes and make the instructors life less boring.
Preparation and work ethic in any situation makes the difference between mediocre and outstanding work. Work ethic includes attitude, perseverance, and preparation. If a person challenges himself to do the best that he can do, his work will reflect this attitude. What more can an employer ask for than the employee who is prepared and ready to complete whatever he is asked to do?
In order to do a better job in the daily routine, here are some steps about which to think:
Improve organization. Make the workplace more enjoyable by changing the papers, desk, and whatever else is used easier to work within.
Include the coworkers in the discussion. This effort will make coming to work less routine if friendships are established. Lifelong friends can be made at work.
Understand that one can always learn more. Knowledge will stimulate and keep those grey cells motivated.
Do more work than normal. If a person is busy, time goes by faster. At the end of the day, there may be time to get to those things that the employer has been wanting.
Quality in any profession constitutes putting more effort in to whatever a person is trying to accomplish. In addition, from this quality work, life at home might just get better also!
One key to "quality work" for me is a system of checks and balances. I find that the more I include parents on what I'm doing in the classroom, the more careful I am to make sure I'm up to date with my teaching, acting as fair as I can in my classroom, and treating my students with respect.
I also regularly assess myself like I do my students. It is obvious when the majority of the class is bored, not "getting it," or really stimulated and engaged. I try to maximize the things that go well and change the lessons that don't seem to go as well.
As a teacher, I always try to come up with interesting and inventive lesson plans, and I rarely use the same ones from year to year as many teachers do. I also take pride in my eNotes work and take the extra time to research and answer questions in a quality manner.
For me, this is a question of pride and accomplishment. I need to be able to take pride in what I do every day, as judged by myself, first, and then, as judged by others. I also need to have a sense of accomplishment at the end of the day, a feeling that I have completed the tasks I'm responsible for, to the best of my ability, and that I have something to show for my effort. Without these motivations, I would be working solely for a paycheck, which would not necessarily a quality performance.
In general, just look to go above and beyond what is asked or expected, and anticipate opportunities to exceed the expectations of others. If you do that, in tandem with being completely dependable, you will find yourself successful in virtually all of your endeavors.
I have to agree with pohnpei. Knowing exactly what the task at hand is key. Without complete understanding, mistakes can be made very easily. Quality work is that which is detailed, completed, and fully addresses the assignment.
In general, the first thing you need to do is to understand what your work assignment is. Doing quality work starts with knowing exactly what you are supposed to do. From there, all you can do is to pay close attention to detail as you do your work. You can't become careless in an attempt to get done quicker. A clear understanding of the task, coupled with attention to detail, make for quality work.
As a scholar, I use what business people would refer to as "best practices" for my discipline. Since my area of research is historical, this means that I spend the time necessary to work with original primary sources by visiting libraries around the world. If, for example, I was looking at a nineteenth century literary critic who mentioned Shakespeare, I would find out precisely which edition of Shakespeare that critic used and seek out and examine that edition myself. Although I might consult an encyclopedia, summary, or other secondary source in order to find citations of the material I need to read for myself, I never simply accept secondary sources but always research primary materials carefully. I also use internet sources only as a means to locate print sources as most internet sources are either superficial or unreliable.