Deadlines are there for a reason. Without a deadline to meet you could simply drag out whatever it is you’re working on for as long as possible, which is hardly a productive way of working. It is therefore important to meet any deadlines that have been set, because there is an expectation on the part of the employer that you will come up with the goods within a set time-frame. If you fail to meet a deadline, you are left looking extremely unprofessional, and if you develop a reputation for missing deadlines, this could hamper your career progress.
Clearly, then, it is important to meet deadlines for your sake as well as your employer’s. If you have been set a deadline then the chances are that your employer is not the only one who is going to be directly affected by your tardiness. Your employer may have to answer to other companies or customers and explain to them why there has been a change in plans. This reflects badly on them and they are obviously going to be less inclined to hire you in future. If you have been set a deadline you need to meet it if you hope to secure work again.
You may not even receive a reference if you did not come up with the goods on time, which is why it is essential that you organise your time and learn to prioritise. If you fail to do so, you could find yourself with a growing heap of work that never seems to shrink. You certainly don’t want to find yourself in the position of having to explain to the individual or company you have been hired by that you are not going to complete your work on time. It is embarrassing for you and frustrating for your employer and you may well incur a financial penalty.
Deadlines are particularly important to meet when you are a freelance worker. Deadlines keep your mind focused on what you need to do and by when, but even if you work in an office you may have deadlines to meet. If you want to make a good impression on your manager, you have to complete work on time. You can’t keep putting off what needs to be done when there is an impending deadline. Unfortunately, work doesn’t do itself and so you have to simply knuckle down and get on with it. Otherwise, you could find that your career comes to a standstill.
The ability to meet deadlines is something that all employers expect from their employees, which is why failing to meet them is frowned upon. The outcome of failing to meet a deadline obviously depends on how important the project was, but if you want to come across as professional so that you can succeed in your career, you have to learn to manage your time more effectively.