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5 Tips on How to Excel at Work

There isn’t necessarily a recipe for success when it comes to your profession, but there are things you can do that will help you stand out, perform your best, and likely get ahead. Whether you’re starting your first job after college or have found the company where you think you’re going to make a career for yourself, putting your best foot forward is always wise. After all, you never know where your career may lead or what connections end up being valuable. No matter what stage you’re at, here are some tips to help you excel at your current job and beyond:

Have the Right Attitude

Attitude is everything in the workplace—whether it’s handling criticism with poise, being happy to step in and help whenever someone needs it, or even managing angry clients—how you react to situations can make or break your reputation. While that doesn’t mean you always have to be happy and excited about everything that comes your way, it does mean that you should put the good of the team first, approach your job with positivity and humility, and try to be as useful as possible. Being a go-getter and team-player can go a long way when it comes to recommendations, promotions, and more.

Dress for Success

Not only can your clothing communicate professionalism, but it can also impact your confidence and mood at work. Even if you don’t work in a formal dress code setting, there are ways you can dress for success with a modern twist. Here are some guidelines to follow when trying to dress smart for work:

  • Add a pop of color. Blue face watches, colorful chinos, and more offer fun spins on business-setting staples that allow you to express your personality while maintaining a professional style.
  • Choose the right fit. One of the easiest ways to appear well dressed is to buy clothes that fit just right (or are tailored to your body). 
  • Stay away from sweats. While it can be tempting to stroll into the office in sweats if you work at a laid-back company, getting too comfortable can affect your motivation to work. Instead, opt for comfortable clothes that still look like you care about your appearance.

Take Time to Get to Know Your Team

Being focused at work is important, but so is taking the time to get to know your team. Building relationships with people in the workplace can help improve your ability to collaborate with them, create valuable connections that can benefit you in the future, and simply make the office a pleasant place to be. And when you show a genuine interest in those around you, they will be more likely to have good things to say about you to others, including your boss. 

Continue to Learn & Grow

Just because you have the job and know how to do the basic duties that are expected of you, doesn’t mean that you can continue to grow your skill set. Seek out opportunities to learn, whether it’s taking online classes, attending events, or teaching yourself how to do new things. For example, your role as a copywriter might be focused on getting down as many words a day as you can, but you can also take the time to learn basic graphic design skills or read up on SEO to make your content that much better. Not only does this show initiative, but it adds value to your role, which could mean better pay.

While you might be hesitant to make the investment in yourself, having more knowledge and a broader skill set is always worth the time and money. Plus, today there are plenty of free resources like blogs and courses on virtually any subject that you can easily access online. If you’re considering taking a more costly course or want to attend an event with a steep few, run the idea by your boss, your company might be willing to reimburse you.

Volunteer When Help Is Requested

Whether a colleague is running behind and needs help meeting a deadline or your boss asks someone to head up a new project, taking the lead and volunteering is a way to show leadership and initiative. Plus, it makes it easier than them having to ask around for help. Being an asset to your team and pulling extra work goes a long way, especially when you’re hoping to be in the running for leadership positions or taking on more responsibility in the future. 

With these tips in mind, you can set out at any job to make a good impression and work your way to the top, no matter what type of industry you work in. 

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