Making Yourself More Noticeable At Work

Not everyone cares to have attention drawn to themselves as work. More often than not, we come in, do our work and then head home. We wind up getting into a permanent auto pilot mode. The problem with this is we just become a person in a company; we become bored with our work, less fulfilled and less challenged. Managers need to start encouraging individuality and involvement from all levels of personnel but that doesn't mean you as an employee should be waiting for those words of encouragement or involvement - sometimes we need to make those opportunities for ourself.

In my experience - I started off as an admin in a small company but after a few years I found myself just naturally falling into a leadership role as we brought on more people. I was training new people, managing all aspects of the office but was still only considered an admin - so in my year end review I listed all the things I had been doing and the successes I had and requested to become an official Office Manager and it was granted to me with an increase in salary. Then I started taking on responsibility that wasn't asked of me - I took more of an interest in HR, I created more office procedures, worked a little more closely with clients and looked into things that could help the overall company improve. As I brought more ideas to my managers and executed those plans and procedures, I became more and more noticed and often expressed interest in having more responsibility and growth within the company.

Recently, I was reading articles on how I could foster encouragement as a manager or be a fair manager during review time and I came upon Sheryl Sandberg's Lean In site where it was talking about encouraging your staff, more so the women, to speak up during meetings, to propose more ideas and have a voice. As a manger I'm trying to encourage change and allow everyone to feel they have a voice in our company to express themselves and offer new ideas. But unfortunately this is not the working environment for most people. Even if you have no plans to move up in a company, don't allow yourself to be just a number. Just because you don't aspire to be CEO doesn't mean you still can't get paid like one. Your ideas may make differences in the workplace and you might inspire someone else to speak up and offer their opinions - it's a chain reaction.

Here are some tips to make yourself noticed:

- Educate yourself on the industry your company is in - read news articles and get google alerts; read up on your companies competitors and find out what they're doing different for you. By doing this, you are far more prepared to engage in conversation with your peers about what's going on in the industry during a meeting or interoffice conversation - you may have read something of value that no one has seen yet.

- If you have some ideas on how your department can be better managed or run - speak up during your meetings or write an email to your manager/supervisor showcasing where the inefficiencies are and what can be done to improve them. Keep in mind that you want to come off as wanting to help the team, not make it seem like they suck and you can fix everything.

- Learn a new program. Whether it's furthering your advances in Microsoft Office or learning new project databases - you're adding extreme value by learning more about something other people don't know; eventually you will become the one people will go to for answers. You also offer insight on how, as a team, a project can be most efficient. What's great is that YouTube offers so many tutorials for free vs. paying for classes.

- Don't let ideas fall on deaf ears. Not all managers are great at passing along those great ideas you are sharing with them. If you're sending email after email to your managers, following up with them, trying to setup a meeting to talk about your idea and you're getting no response, bring it up in a meeting setting so that other people can chime in along with you and don't be afraid to seek other supervisors to help. Send an email to the next person in charge, cc'ing your manager so they're not totally in the dark about what you're doing.

- Engage with your co-workers. If you're noticing that someone is having a hard time, falling behind on work or just needing a little extra help with programs - step up and offer your assistance. This will show your managers that you're willing to help the team succeeded by making sure no one is falling behind.

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