5 Ways To Work Your Way Up!

We all try to impress our bosses daily. And we do it with the intention that they should in return consider us for upcoming promotions, give us great appraisals and approve a fat pay rise. It’s always a challenge trying to come up with interesting ways to make the bosses notice you more than other people. So I have a couple of ideas which I have personally tried and tested that can help you get ahead of the pack.

1. Work Smart
Ok you may think this is so straight forward that you don’t need to read it. Truth be told most of us don’t work smart, we are ok with the job we have, we mind our own business and we are ok with getting to work at 8.00am-ish, we are ok because it’s just a job after all, the company isn’t even mine. WRONG mentality.

Working smart means be productive and do your job with excellence within the time that you are meant to be working. If it’s a report required then do it like it’s an exam, if it’s a spreadsheet then make it look fabulous. Working smart means stand out from the rest in small noticeable ways.

In my previous job I used to be up to my eyeballs in spreadsheets so each time I was asked for a summary I would challenge myself to make that spreadsheet look spectacular. I would make it colorful, short, straight forward and easy to understand, well spaced and played around with the fonts. It always looked professional and I realized that my boss began to ask me for spreadsheet summaries for things we didn’t normally summarize. That equaled more responsibility to me and a pay rise in my face.

2. Volunteer yourself to Others
Sometimes it feels good to help other people just because you can, not necessarily expecting anything back in return. Try it! It presents an opportunity to show how good you are at what you can do. It also allows your bosses to understand that you can work a challenge no matter what it is.

Volunteering to others can sometimes not be possible if you have a work load of your own, but it helps when you find yourself a bit free to be courteous enough to ask others if they need help. Obviously there’s the clear difference between volunteering to help, plain bragging and being walked all over. So do it with good intentions.


3. Meet your deadlines
As an employee there is nothing more important (besides showing up for work) than meeting set deadlines. Even if the work is not requested for immediately, you will be assured it is ready when the time for presenting it comes forth. Meeting deadlines is all about being able to present your task within a set given time line. Do not procrastinate a task you have been given because that is exactly how a back log of work and disorganization begins. You don’t want to reach that level and if you are in that level then get organized at work!

4. Be Knowledgeable
Knowledge is power. Be knowledgeable about your industry, your competitors: what are they doing? Also be knowledgeable about each and every aspect of the company you work for. Don’t be in your own little cubicle bubble not showing interest in the rest of the departments. Get to know your colleagues, who the directors are, who the top notch mangers are, in a friendly and professional manner and not in a social one per se.

It is also good to know what the company is currently working on, who’s doing what, what’s happening when. Remember, you were not hired to come socialize in the work place you were hired to work and since you get your agreed paycheck at the end of each month then it only follows that you should keep your end of the bargain, hard as it may be. Read up on trends going on in the world focusing on your industry because this will help you hold out a conversation should a boss randomly begin a conversation with you some day. This also helps you contribute something positive in meetings, and generate ideas for your department, there are loads of pluses for keeping knowledgeable.

5. Pay Attention
Not just to your surroundings but also to your own behavior and appearance. We like to think that we can get away with small little things in the office like gossiping in the kitchen, taking long lunches, too many social phone calls on office lines, doing minimal work per day to appear busy and skimming through the newspaper on your employers’ time. Small habits often always become instilled into your brain and soon enough they seem ok to do.

As you show up for work every day, remember that you are a reflection of your company so dress appropriately. I get so disturbed when I walk in town and see a young lady dressed in a hot looking suit and smart, I then look at her feet and yes there you have it, a pair of sandal slippers. Are we being serious? Dress your part and things happen. I recall that my boss often picked me to go for meetings because I looked very professional even though it was clear that someone else was supposed to go for those meetings. Tagging along helped me meet numerous people and helped me form a rapport with my boss.

As I sign out may we remember we are paid to work not to find out the latest hot story reverberating across the corridors.

Image credits: StillSearc and Shadowkill

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  • Mary

    whooo….! thats aa good mind opener. thanxxx

  • Naomie

    Thanks Mary i enjoyed writing it very much!

  • http://lily.co.ke/members/quill/ Mwesh

    Naomie….then how comes there are bosses who do not appreciate the good work that their employees do?I mean,if the report from the clients is 100% positive then recognition of good work is a plausible thing for an employer to do for his employees.Or awarding them as a motivation to go on with the good work.Trust me some employers have become more selfish and think that we work for free…its nothing personal especially if you give 120% to receive a slap on the face that says not good enough…..very demoralizing

  • http://lily.co.ke/members/nkinyanjui/ Naomie

    Ruth, the thing is in as much as you are pulling your weight in your job, your boss is never going to hand you a raise and benefits without your asking. That rarely happens, speak up to your boss and demand for what you believe you deserve, or compromise with your boss. Example, request for a raise but do it it wisely with all your client satisfaction facts/sales targets ready noted down to dish to him one by one, then make sure you know just how much of a raise you want, don’t go blindly to your boss without a number in mind. Alternatively request for benefits such as airtime. We all believe we deserve to be paid more than we earn because we all work above and beyond the call of duty, but hey if you don’t ask, he sure won’t offer it. ps. most women are just too scared to even ask

  • http://lily.co.ke/members/quill/ Mwesh

    Naomie….with all that said and done…..tried and tested….still no raise….what kind of boss is would you call this one.Its rather unfair to feel this way but anyway…..it came up recently and was told that beginning of the next year evaluations would be done….trust me I shall keep you posted.Funny thing I always speak on behalf of everyone…

  • http://lily.co.ke/members/nkinyanjui/ Naomie

    Its great that you speak up for those quiet people, we need more of you in many offices!!! I hope the evaluation goes well, keep following up on it because sometimes bosses may say they will do something even when they have no intention of following through, just because they can!

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