Miriam-Webster defines work ethic as ": a belief in work as a moral good : a set of values centered on the importance of doing work and reflected especially in a desire or determination to work hard." I believe that a definition of what a work ethic looks like can vary depending on your employer. I am a great believer in earning the paycheck that I am being given. It is my goal to do the highest quality work that I am capable of. As an instructional designer, my job is to make sure that people work better after they have taken the training that I have created. However, I do not believe that working hard means working long. You should be able to do good work in the regular hours allotted for your job. That is often within your control. In my job, I have knowledge on how to determine how long it should take me and make my commitments according. Your challenge in life will be to achieve a work-life balance. So how do I do this? I work first when I am working. I do not spend a lot of time talking with coworkers when I should be working. I make efficient use of meetings and other activities, focusing on getting work done. I have fun at work, but it can not come before the work. When you are away from work, be away from work. Enjoy your life and come to a job refreshed and ready to work.
Lastly, work ethic is vital. We work and interact with others every day, even in this more "virtual" period. It is our responsibility to be nice individuals to each other, it's something we owe to others and to ourselves.
That's a great question and the short answer would be that it's very important in whatever you do. Anything that you're taking time out of your day to do should be something that you're willing to put effort into and at the end of the day the results will reflect the work that you put in.
If you're putting everything you can into school, different projects, relationships, etc then you can know that you did your best and put yourself in the best position possible. The only thing you can control is what you put in and the results will follow. Hope this helps!
Karen A. recommends the following next steps:
What a great question; it's brave to ask. I believe that work ethic is a commitment to complete the work your employer gives you.
It goes deeper than that. Work ethic begins with a commitment to yourself to do the best job you can possibly do because you have pride in your work and the it's tied to you specifically. I like to say it's an internal drive (like an engine) that is always running. You have the key and control weather it's on or off. When you have a great work ethic, outside influences cannot keep you from doing your best always!
This make you reliable, dependable and employers know they can count on you.