There are lots of ways to shine at work. Here are a few strategies many successful employees use, which I’ve found to be helpful in my career as well:
Improve the Business by Quantifying Results – If you’re just one of many equally qualified co-workers, you need to do something different to stand out. Maybe you could find a more efficient way to do something at work. Or you could improve things by bringing in an outside expert. All businesses have room for improvement. By doing research on the side or getting advice from people at other companies, you could really shake things up at your office. Two important components of success, though, are to make sure your boss knows what you did and to quantify your work with results! Otherwise, someone else could take credit for it, or it could go unnoticed. But if there is a dollar figure tied to your improvements, senior management will surely take notice.
Continuous Learning and Growing – To earn a promotion, it’s important to show your enthusiasm for learning new things and growing in your role. People who are perfectly content doing the same thing every day usually don’t get promoted. To learn new skills, you can volunteer for extra assignments, or perhaps your employer will even fund classes. If it’s free and you have the time, take them up on the offer! You can use those skills elsewhere, and furthering your education can only make you more valuable both inside and outside the firm.
Networking – This doesn’t mean brown-nosing. It means making legitimate connections with people at your company and in your industry. I’ve served as a mentor to others and also have asked others within my company to guide me on various topics, from career direction to handling difficult situations. There’s no harm in asking someone for a moment of their time to discuss career options. You could also ask for their take on where things are headed in the company and what sorts of changes could help the firm. By showing interest and following people’s advice, you really stand out with senior employees.
Nivene obtained her Bachelors of Communication from Loyola University Chicago. She loves to discuss fashion, finance, TV and cupcakes. Rumor has it she has an owl fetish and drinks too much coffee – that is yet to be determined.