Standing out from the crowd isn’t easy, especially when everyone is vying for that promotion.
Combine these tips with drive and determination and you’ll smash those career goals in no time.
Dress to impress
First impressions count so make time to plan, press and organise your work wardrobe. Not only does what you wear influence the opinion of clients and colleagues, it impacts your work ethic too.
Choose your colours wisely. Leave flamboyant tones for the weekend and stick to warm, reassuring earthy tones like greens, browns, blues and black that denote both a sense of authority and stability.
Gain respect from your peers
Above everything, it’s important that you learn to communicate effectively with your peers. Establishing yourself within the workplace is crucial to your development. We continually make judgements of one another, evaluating each other’s skillset and value to the company. It’s important that you project the right attitude at work and be appreciated, not overlooked by your colleagues.
According to Harvard Behavioural Scienceresearcher Amy Cuddy, the two qualities every employee needs to be regarded favourably by co-workers are “warmth and competence”. Being down to earth and friendly to others builds trust, whereas competence and indisputable knowledge of the business suggests power.
To gain respect at the office you need to be mindful of your image and persona. Be proud of your title and know what’s expected of you. If a colleague confides in you, don’t break their confidence, and separate yourself from office gossip.
Body language in the workplace is very different to how you’d normally act in other environments. What’s fine in front of friends isn’t always the best behaviour before colleagues. When in doubt, keep it professional, especially if you’re new to the job.
Be positive and engaging when colleagues speak to you, whether they’re explaining a new project or chatting about what they got up to at the weekend
Other social cues like tilting your head a little and leaning forward also indicate that you’re paying attention. Meeting somebody for the first time? Shake their hand. According to a study by the Income Center for Trade Shows, “people are two times more likely to remember you if you shake hands with them” and perceive you as more friendly/approachable in future.
Go the extra mile
A great way to earn brownie points at the office is by showing genuine passion for what you do. Being proactive, volunteering and expressing enthusiasm for certain projects sets you apart from the rest.
According to a study made by the University of Konstanz, employers characterise those who show initiative as potential leaders, unlike those who shy away from responsibility.
Engage in fitness activities
Socialising is key to achieving a successful work dynamic. Getting to know those who you spend most of your time with is important, for both building effective working relationships and your health.
Encourage team building and fitness activities within the company. It pushes your body to the limit and shows what a team player you can be, while also developing the essential skills needed to be an office ace: patience, trust and the ability to motivate others.
Keep a sense of humour
Amidst tough deadlines and unreasonable client demands, sometimes a sense of humour is all that gets us through the working day. Laughing and joking with work pals reduces stress, boosts morale and increases productivity.
A good sense of humour can give you that ‘likeable’ factor in the office. Although, be wary of what’s acceptable and keep it tasteful – nothing kills a conversation quicker than a bad joke.
Brush up on office etiquette
Whatever the working environment, it’s important to be considerate of others. Even the slightest annoyance can cause a bad feeling, and office politics is the last thing you need. Good manners cost nothing, so use them.
Don’t check your phone during meetings, be aware of how loud you are on the phone, respect other people’s property and neversteal food from the communal fridge.
Make your watch 15 minutes fast
Time is money in business; waste it, and your boss won’t be impressed. To be an office ace, you need to stay ahead of the game: keep on top of your work, make deadlines and arrive to meetings on time.
Top tip: make your watch 15 minutes fast so you’re always ahead of the clock. Having excellent time management reduces stress, creates discipline and produces a higher quality of work. You never know when those 15 minutes will come in handy!