Published: Oct 14, 2022
You’ve had the same job for a while now, and while you’re happy with where you are, you can’t escape the feeling that you need something more. You might even see yourself as a great candidate for a leadership role, but how do you get there? Even if you’ve been showing up to work on time each day and completing all the tasks that are required of you, you might not be doing enough to break away and distinguish yourself in the eyes of your boss. Today we’re going to talk about some strategies you can use to take that extra step, get noticed, and maybe even score that sweet new position in a leadership role.
Go Above and Beyond
Eventually you’ll find that you’ve got your everyday tasks down to a science, which means you might have some extra time and energy on your hands. The best ways to use said time and energy are to take on new tasks and lend your coworkers a helping hand. Choose new tasks that you know you can accomplish and that won’t cut into your normal day-to-day assignments. If you’re dealing with customers, do your best to provide them with a great experience-they might just go and tell a manager how pleasant you were!
If you want to lend your coworkers a hand, ask them what you can do to help. You wouldn’t want to get involved in something where you’ll be in over your head, so make sure the tasks aren’t outside of the realm of your abilities. For example, if you’re on the marketing team, you probably shouldn’t march on down to the accounting department and announce that you’re available to help out. In other words, try to keep it within your team.
Own Your Work
Whether you’ve completed a project with flawless perfection or made a mistake on an assignment, owning your work is key. In the event you’re receiving praise from your boss on a job well done, make sure you say thank you and express how much you appreciate the feedback. Believe it or not, some people have trouble accepting compliments, so if you do, just keep it simple and professional. Otherwise, don’t go overboard or let your head get too big, just be natural.
Everyone makes mistakes from time to time, so don’t sweat it. If your boss confronts you about something that went a little haywire, accept the criticism and ask if there is anything you can do to fix the problem. Every boss loves a problem-solver, and they appreciate employees who want to learn and that take the initiative to do so. If you get an assignment that you don’t understand, ask your boss how you should start. It would be far better to demonstrate that you’re willing to learn and step outside your comfort zone than to jump headfirst into a project that you have no idea how to complete.
Give Your Coworkers Props
Let’s say you were assigned a major project along with some of your coworkers. As you’re working on your part of the project, take note of what everyone else is doing. Even if you’re not in a leadership role, you can step up and help keep the project moving forward by recognizing and appreciating your coworkers’ efforts. This will not only boost morale, but it will demonstrate to others your willingness to “steer the ship,” as they say.
If your boss asks you how the project is going, make sure you include a bit about your coworkers’ contributions. Your boss will be thrilled that everyone in the team is working well together as they make progress, and you’ll come off as someone who pays attention and who gives credit when credit is due. Perhaps most importantly, when everyone on the team is being recognized by your boss, they’ll be motivated to do their best.
Be a Leader
We just spoke a little about how to be a leader, even when you’re not necessarily in a leadership role. If you’re looking to level up you’ve got to exhibit the qualities of a leader in yourself and in your work. For starters, a good leader is someone who sees the big picture. Next time you’re working on a project, take some time to think about how the project will impact the overall organization. This new perspective will help make your contributions more effective, and will demonstrate your ability to think outside of yourself and the tasks you are working on.
When you’re working in a group, go the extra mile and listen to everyone’s ideas. An open mind is an absolute necessity if you want to be a leader. If you find your coworkers coming to you on a regular basis with questions or concerns, or with their ideas, it’s a good indicator that you’re a great listener. This will keep the lines of communication open, while giving everyone the opportunity to feel valued. Good feelings lead to a team that is motivated, productive, and full of energy.
Leading by example is a great way to inspire those around you. Getting to work on time and putting your best foot forward in your work are the tip of the iceberg. When someone is a genuine, kind, helpful person, it can be infectious and will make others strive to be better. Indeed, the mark of a great leader is the ability to inspire others.
Knowing your limits is key to self-preservation. These strategies will help you move forward and develop great leadership qualities, but make sure you’re still performing all your day-to-day tasks to the best of your ability. When you see the right opportunity to prove yourself as a leader, take it-eventually, it will pay off.
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