Having a tough time at work? Getting passed over for promotions and pay rises or hoping to land the job you’ve always dreamed of? Whether you are a bright-eyed graduate ready to enter the world of work or a highly experienced professional here are some skills that you may not have considered that can help you shine in your workplace, and make your work life a little easier.
It can be really beneficial to put all of your focus into one task rather than bouncing around between a few or even getting in the occasional check of your social media (we’re all guilty of that every now and again!). There are a few reasons why this is a good method; periods of concentration are more productive, it helps you to stand out by prioritizing the more difficult tasks on your to-do list and ultimately it lets you make the most of your skills and talents. So give yourself some time – mark yourself as busy in your calendar and avoid any external distraction as much as possible by turning your phone on airplane mode and turning off your computer’s notifications. Maybe even turn off the wifi for that ultimate ‘do not disturb’ experience. The more you practice these concentration periods, the better you’ll get at them.
This one can certainly be difficult, as it can sometimes feel like people are not appreciative of hard work. But listening to and accepting the feedback of others is hugely beneficial to you. Firstly, it’s the best way for you to develop your work. And secondly, if you don’t you can make yourself seem very closed off and standoffish. This will make people less likely to want to work with you or accept any advice from you in return. Listen closely to what people have to say and try not to become defensive. It can also help you to ask for specifics about what people think need improvement. Not only will this help you implement the feedback, but will show people that you are attentive and willing to work on things.
Hold yourself accountable
Sometimes, if you’re out to impress, you may try and take on extra tasks to show how hard you can work. But sometimes this can lead to you biting off than you can chew which is not helping you or the people you work with. People often underestimate how long projects will take, or what they contain, so instead, you need to try and work the other way by overestimating what will be involved in your new workload. A good method is to add between 25% to 50% to your anticipated timescale. So, in the best case scenario, you end up with plenty of time to spare, or if things become complicated and new challenges arise, you have given yourself plenty of breathing space in order to keep on top of your project.
These are just some small tips to help you improve your work. Obviously, they aren’t quick fixes and will take some practice to implement, but once you’ve got them, they’ll be invaluable to you and your career.