Starting a new job can be confusing and even terrifying, but it usually gets easier once you’ve learned the ropes. And when you understand the ins and outs of your job, you can start thinking about ways to stand out from the crowd.
But what if your performance review is still a long way down the track – and you don’t subscribe to school of self-promotion?
Here are five subtle but effective ways to show them what you’ve got.
1. Understand your role
OK, so you know what you job title is, but do you really have a grasp of why your work is important to the organisation? If not, it might be time to ask your manager about how your piece of the puzzle fits in.
But before you do, think about your own strengths so you can suggest ways that your boss can make the most of your skills.
And of course, no one’s going to be a stellar performer in every area, so don’t beat yourself up if you’re struggling in some aspects of your job. At the same time, put in the effort to address areas where you know you need to improve.
2. Pay attention
It’s great to share what you know with your colleagues, and it’s important to have your say in team meetings. But it’s just as important to listen to others – and not just the big boss.
Take the time to really hear what your colleagues have to say, rather than waiting for them to finish so you can get in your 2 cents’ worth. A bit of reflection can go a long way in your career – and you’ll be helping to create a workplace where people feel valued for voicing their opinions.
3. Be low maintenance
You probably spend more time with your work colleagues than most other people you know. That’s why it’s important to be a pleasure – not a chore – to be around.
Simple actions like thinking before you speak (or email) and being polite, pleasant and helpful will mean that people enjoy having you on their team.
4. Know yourself
While it’s important to be a team player, that doesn’t mean you have to sell yourself short. Like all your colleagues, you have your own strengths, so why not explain what they are? Your team members will appreciate knowing they can ask for your help when they need it.
It’s also possible to let others know when you’ve done something well, without sounding like you’re blowing your own trumpet. For instance, you might email your manager thanking them for their help with a task, while also outlining how their guidance helped you nail it.
5. Be a self-starter
In many jobs, performance is measured by key performance indicators (KPIs). But even if your role doesn’t have any, it’s a good idea to come up with you own. That way, you can track your own progress and see if there are any areas where you could use some extra training.
By taking the initiative at work, you’ll impress your boss – and you’ll enjoy a sense of achievement too.