Everyone wants to become a desired asset to their company. It means they have succeeded and are well respected. However, what often ends up happening is that most people just become a cog in the wheel. They are disposable, and they are just going through the motions as a corporate employee. Year after year they simply churn out a living. Contrary to what many people believe, it does not have to be that way. Getting to the top is a lot easier than most people think.
Read. Read everything you can about your business and industry. Read on your phone while on the bus or train, read relative news articles while in the bathroom, take five minutes away from your lunch and learn something new. Read the sales literature that your company puts out. Read and learn the complete history of your company and the industry as a whole. Understand the ins and outs of the company all the way down to how the mail is picked up and delivered. At the same time, read about your competitor. Know their products, their strengths and their weaknesses. Know everything you can possibly know about the entire industry on down to the names of the CEOs’ dogs.
Apply this knowledge. I don’t mean go around and tell people random trivia facts. Nor do I mean sit down and ask your boss to quiz you. You do not need to flaunt the fact that you know more than anyone else, but rather weave it into your every day workings. In your reports talk about how the company started with XYZ values and how your suggestion is helping to make sure they are a prominent feature of the company. Show how your company stands out above the competitor, and offer solutions that nobody else does.
Get to work. The average employee actually only works about 6 hours per day. If you can work just 7 hours, you will be doing more than most people, and that extra hour of work will shine through. But don’t just go through the motions. Take the initiative to do a task. The kicker is that you have to take on tasks that are not prescribed to you, and one that is not even known to be an issue. You need to be one step ahead of everyone else and get the job done before the boss knows that it needs to be done.
Working hard and getting ahead is more about knowing what to do rather than just applying yourself and following through on tasks. If you can stay one step ahead of your boss, you will become an invaluable asset to the company. But first, you need to become an expert by spending every spare moment reading about the company and industry. Then by carefully weaving your knowledge into your work, you will become recognized as someone that knows what they are talking about. Finally, when you start going to the boss with solutions to problems that he or she didn’t even know were problems, you will be an asset to the company, and get all the perks that go with it.
What do you do to make yourself stand out at work?
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