Over the course of the last three months I have made strides at work that I wouldn’t have imagined possible a year ago. I spoke up and asked for more responsibility which resulted in a promotion, my performance in the role resulted in being recognized as employee of the month, and I have since been approached about new career opportunities.
This was by no means an overnight success and there is still plenty I want to achieve, both personally and professionally. It started with an honest self-evaluation, followed by seeking advice from professionals I respect then deciding to do what it takes to get to where I want to be. Here are a few tips that have helped me along the way:
Ten Ways to Raise Your Profile at Work
1. Get back to basics – Show up on time, don’t abuse breaks, stay until it’s actually time to go… even on Fridays.
2. Dress for success – Dress for the job you want, not the one you have. If you want people to see you as management material, it helps to now dress like the summer intern. No need to break the bank – Shop Goodwill, the clearance rack, sales and always check online for coupons and discount codes.
3. Know your stuff – No matter your industry, there should be policies and procedures for your position, learn them! You can also search online for best practices, ideas to improve performance and free webinars.
4. Be a problem solver – There is bound to be something you don’t like about your job. Using the knowledge, you gained from point 3, develop a new process or idea that will improve your office and make the rough spots smooth. Executive staff is always looking for problem solvers rather than complainers.
5. Raise your hand – Manage your time wisely; if you find you have down time, volunteer to help out in an area that you have interest in. Not only will you benefit from cross-training, you begin to create a reputation outside of your comfort zone.
6. Network – Networking is a good opportunity to practice your elevator speech, make connections with colleagues to support one another and expand your circle
7. Find a mentor – Use your new network to identify a mentor. There’s a difference between a mentor and an advisor. An advisor can be a professional you look up to in your industry; whereas a mentor should know your work intimately and be able to help refine your ability in a way that gets you closer to your career goals
8. Set career goals – My husband always says you have to know what you want to get where you want. Sit down and make a three-, five- and ten-year career plan. Write it down and watch it manifest.
9. Identify what matters – Learn the difference between what’s interesting and what’s important. Focus on the important things.
10. Know your worth – Don’t get down on yourself today because you’re not where you want to in ten years. Keep at it and believe in yourself. Having the confidence to know your worth will give you the boost you need to negotiate when your opportunity does show up.