We all make mistakes at work. Hopefully, they are never serious enough to get you fired. I made my share of mistakes at the companies I have worked for. Thankfully never anything big enough to get me fired (or even reprimanded - much). My biggest mistake had nothing to do with the work.
My friends will be surprised to learn that I'm more introverted than I let on. People know me as an outgoing guy, usually high-energy, and fun-loving. This is true, mainly around people I know, or when I'm in a situation where people want to speak with me. It is probably part of the reason why I absolutely love to speak at conferences and corporate events.
I regret this...
My mistake when I worked with people was I would choose to eat alone. Heck, Keith Ferrazzi and Tahl Raz even wrote a killer networking book entitled, "Never Eat Alone". The truth is that I did too often, and I regret this.
“Wherever you are in life right now, and whatever you know, is a result of the ideas, experiences, and people you have interacted with in your life,” - Keith Ferrazzi and Tahl Raz.
When I would eat solo it would usually be in my car, hidden on a residential street where nobody would find me. I would gobble down my lunch listening to a podcast, reading a book, and writing in my journal. I clearly remember reading Chris Guillabeau's "The Art of Non-Conformity" over Publix sushi in my old Subaru Forester. His book helped me as I moved on to work for myself.
When I did eat lunch with my co-workers, I would always enjoy their company. We would have plenty of laughs and it would be fun, but I didn't do it enough. Do you?
Your Lunch Challenge
Ask your colleagues to lunch tomorrow. Do this because you want to get to know them better. You probably have more in common than you know. You might find an opportunity to help them with a work-related project. You may even become friends outside of the office, so when you leave the company (and most of us eventually do) you can still keep in touch. Maybe you will meet up over lunch.