Shoot for the moon and you will reach for the stars. In the ever-evolving job market today, it is more important than ever before to challenge yourself and go out of your comfort zone. In many instances, you may find yourself applying for a job that may seem like a “stretch” or “out of your league”. Here are 4 ways that can help you rise to the occasion!
1. Focus on transferable skills and being adaptable
Study the job description carefully. Write down the list of skills and qualifications that they are looking for. Compare this list to your resume and make linkages wherever possible. This will form as an excellent base for talking points during your interview.
More often than not, there are a lot of transferable skills that you possess than what is immediately obvious. Managerial experience and sales skills can be demonstrated in a variety of ways and you shouldn’t be shy in speaking up for yourself.
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1. 5% Rule
The key to success and getting promoted in the workplace is often dependent on 5% of your visible and most important work rather than 95% of the work you accomplish in your day-to-day.
Volunteer and challenge yourself to take up visible projects and tasks. Place yourself in projects that put you in sight of upper management. A great article on the 5% rule is linked here.
The workplace can be full of sharks and snakes. Survival is a matter of training, perseverance and rising above the situation. These are 5 suggestions to think about if you find yourself in an unpleasant situation.
1. Dealing with sabotage
This is a tricky situation and should be dealt with carefully. Do not stoop to the level of your co-worker and engage in an emotional or confrontational manner. Poor reactions will only look bad on you and not your co-worker.
Think of how you can avoid further traps instead. If a co-worker stole your credit, make sure that next time you have to work with them, demonstrate your contributions in a more visible way, and perhaps on a timely basis so that everyone knows the process involved and not just the end-result.
Workplace sabotage sometimes stem from a toxic work environment that goes beyond just 1 – 2 nasty individuals. If it is truly a workplace culture that you cannot adjust to, it may be better to formulate an exit plan.
1. Types and Number of Leave
Leave days are possibly one of the main benefits that potential employees look out for. Taking a closer look at your overall leave days, you should also look into the types of leave that your company offers and make sure you use them. For instance, family and childcare leave are in addition to standard leave days and can be really helpful for parents.
1. Urgency Matrix
To make the best use of your time, you should set time-limits for your tasks and group similar or related tasks together. It is better to finish one task completely before moving on to the next. It is tempting to jump from one task to another, as and when they come in but this creates a lot of inefficiency.
The Eisenhower Matrix above is a useful starting point to batch tasks and prioritize.
Important > Urgent. Try to focus on important tasks rather than urgent tasks and you will find that you will get much more done rather than just getting bogged down with minutiae. You may also start to realize that many “urgent” tasks resolve themselves without you.
Research shows that only around 17 percent of people are able to accurately estimate the passage of time. Start tracking time spent, and then use this knowledge to set reasonable time-limits for each task. This will allow you to organize your day much more effectively.
1. Know the Chain-of-Command
The best way to impress your boss is to make her life easier. To do so, you need to be aware of the chain of command in the office. Who does your boss report to? What are her performance targets?
Most people are only focused on me-me-me. However, the big picture is always at play. Help your boss hit her targets, and you are guaranteed to be the fastest promoted employee in her team.
As we look forward to the holidays at the end of the year, we also face the annual review. Instead of dreading it, think positive! The annual review is a great way to reflect on your past year, share your value and project better things for your future. Set yourself up for success and a big bonus by focusing on these 4 things:
1. Have a Goals List
Compare your current status with last year goals’ or last years’ review to put things in perspective. Are you still consistently weak in some areas or have you managed to overcome them? Think about your long-term goals. What areas can you improve on to set yourself up for a promotion?
“The only place where success comes before work is in the dictionary.” Building a successful career requires a long-term and strategic mindset. Here are 4 habits that might be holding you back.
1. Doing only what you are asked
If you want to rise in the company, you need to take initiative. Doing only what you are asked may prevent you from getting fired (for now), but it will never get you anywhere. Wherever possible, stretch yourself, initiate ideas and help others’ out. Every experience is a valuable one, will help you grow and signal to your boss that you are someone to watch.
In the job-hunting process, it is inevitable that you will face rejection. Whether it is “ghosting” (no reply whatsoever), a cursory rejection letter or a painful “we’ve gone with another candidate” after an interview, rejection can hurt. At the same time, rejection should not be taken personally and here are some ways to re-train your mind to use rejection as fuel for future success.
1. When one door closes, another opens
It sounds cliché but this is very true. Being the “right fit” strikes both ways. Your employer has many undisclosed reasons for not hiring you. For instance, you may be over-qualified and they cannot match your pay, or they know that you would not be a good fit for the culture of the firm. In many instances, not being offered a position is probably a blessing in disguise. When one door closes, another opens and the next opportunity may just be the perfect fit for you.