It’s hard to stand out if your job is the same as many other people at the same company. This makes it harder to get a promotion, and this is even more difficult if all of you are working on the same project or all vying for one permanent or promoted position. So what can you do? Here’s some ideas:
Work on Your Soft Skills
No matter what you do for work, your emotional intelligence or “E.Q.” can make a difference at your work. The World Economic Forum wrote that it will be one of the top 10 jobs skills by 2020 because people with high E.Q. can handle pressure well, know how to cooperate with others, are open to feedback, and empathetic. The higher up the organization, the more crucial the emotional intelligence abilities are, since the impacts are greater and felt throughout the entire company. The more essential you are to the company, the higher EQ you need. Make sure you’re respectful to the people already there and find you’re go-to people that you’ll talk to every day. If you’re working with someone from another team, ask them to coffee or lunch. Make a point of chatting with them whenever you see them.
A collaborative study by TINYpulse and Microsoft Workplace Analytics showed that employees who had the largest number of connections with their peers have the most influence. The more they collaborated with others, the more highly they were regarded in the organization. While this could take up to four hours more per week working with other people, it always paid off.
To get more proficient at expanding your network, first don’t be afraid to show what you don’t know. Lack of experience can lead to questions that connect you with people you’d never have met if you just pretended to understand everything. To meet as many people as possible, ask as many relevant questions as you can.
Express Gratitude To Everyone
There is the common belief that thanking people at work doesn’t need to be done. If you’ve seen Mad Men, maybe you remember the episode “The Suitcase”, during which Don Draper and Peggy Olson get into a heated argument over her contribution to an award-winning campaign, and his lack of appreciation for her work. The dialogue went something like this:
Don: It’s your job. I give you money, you give me ideas.
Peggy: And you never say thank you.
Don:That’s what the money is for!
He then goes on to say “You should be thanking me, along with Jesus, for giving you another day.” This attitude doesn’t go over well, with Peggy crying in the bathroom. Later, Peggy quits. Quits in a classy manner, but still quits for another offer somewhere else. Would a little gratitude have made a difference? We don’t know, because she never got it from Don. When she quits, he tries to give her a raise, but that’s not what she wanted. For years people have stayed at jobs where they were berated, simply because that’s what everyone did.
Times are different now. Money as a reward, is usually insufficient, depending on your salary. With a gig economy and everyone working on their side-hustle, it’s not surprising that people are also changing jobs at the same rate. The majority of businesses have discovered that increasing benefits makes a difference, as does increasing pay, having lunch delivered, etc. How you are treated makes a difference, and this includes how you treat your coworkers. Expressing gratitude helps build the team morale, build your networking relationships with each individual person, and builds their confidence in your work.