Thursday, January 31, 2019

Try These Tips to Stand Out and Shine at Work

This is the week where Australia really starts to shine. Australia Day is our public holiday event where we celebrate with friends and family our great nation. We honour Australia Day Award recipients and we recognise and respect those we inherited the land from.

We also go back to work. It has been almost a month long holiday for many with a bit of work thrown in. Well the party is over and it is back to work time. How will you make a difference at work this year and communicate your value and build your profile in a professional way? Try these five tips.

Perhaps sometimes we need to take matters into our own hands and demonstrate that we really do count. How will you make a difference and communicate your value and build your profile in a professional way? Try these five tips.

Get off your chair. Work the room (or office) and talk to others. We always have so much to do and busy, busy seems to be the mantra. Can you identify an opportunity to have at least one face-to-face conversation with someone during the day? Call someone and see if they are going for coffee or lunch. Chat to a colleague in the lunchroom instead of spending your break on the iPhone.

Ask people about their role – see if there is a way you can help or assist them. They will also gain more insight and understanding of what you do.

Meeting and talking to others is also important for freelancers or self-employed entrepreneurs. If you’ve been feeling a bit isolated and disconnected over the holiday break, set up a networking plan for the next few months and make a list of people you can meet up with.

Coffee conversations can lead to great connections.

Join in. Be a team player and take part in internal activities. It might mean turning up earlier than usual to join the yoga class or staying a bit later to find out the plan for the fundraising event. Or attending the after-work drinks on occasion, even if you don’t feel like it.

Work doesn’t have to be all consuming, or always about the money. It can also be more enjoyable if you are engaged in extracurricular activities that you enjoy and where you can connect with like-minded people. Getting to know your work mates a bit better, what they do in their role and in their spare time will help you share your position, the value you bring to others and to the business.

I had a lovely compliment recently when a workshop participant said that I helped her realise how important she is in her role. It reminded me that sometimes we don’t realise the value we bring to our jobs and our work. Often we’re reminded of when things go wrong – rather than getting a, “well done” from a boss or customer. I hope you are not that boss!

Present wherever you can. Doing a board presentation for most employees is daunting. How would you feel if you were asked to present your latest project to your executive leadership team? No doubt nervous, unprepared and uncomfortable. Doesn’t have to be that way.

Learn to be a good presenter as early as you can in your career. Do a public speaking course and take every opportunity to speak in front of an audience. This is also a key skill to master for independent professionals. Being able to clearly articulate what you do or pitch for business is important to the growth of your business.

At first it might be just speaking in front of your team – or standing up and introducing yourself at a networking event. From there build up to a managers meeting or volunteer to chair a committee where you have to put forward your ideas. Progress from there to doing more formal presentations and learn to be a proficient presenter.

Write something. Content is everywhere and if you’re reading this far – thank you. It is hard to break through the noise. People are hungry for information though and what you do and have experience in will be of appeal to others.

Share your expertise online by writing blogs, LinkedIn posts, and commenting. Stay “on brand” with your topic and soon you will attract followers in your area of expertise. Once you have a body of work, you could show it to your workplace internal newsletter editor and ask if they might take a submission. That would be good personal PR – as long as it has your name on it – of course!

This strategy also works for you if you are self-employed. You do know the impact of social media but also consider mainstream print and radio as way to showcase your personal brand.

Win awards. This is definitely one way to standout. Being good at what you do is still the essential criteria for work success. However, great work is not enough if people don’t know about it.

Most industries have awards – think hairdressing, technology, hotels, media, literature, sport, film, music, fashion, architecture…and the list goes on. It does take time and effort to submit an award application and you may not win.

It does though give you the chance to look at your work through fresh eyes. Having to answer questions and be succinct about why you should be a winner could just help you believe that you already are.

Personal branding is your way to shine. Find out more in my free video series, NOOK, LOOK, HOOK, 3 Steps to Build a Stand Out Personal Brand.

Sue Currie is a speaker and the author of IMPRESSario, Present and Promote the Star Within You. She is recognised as a leading authority on personal branding to boost image, profile, brand and business. Through her image management and profile building programs, workshops, consulting and keynote presentations, Sue helps businesses and entrepreneurs position and present an influential professional brand.

Image courtesy Shutterstock

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