All of us want to excel and be successful in the workplace. We want to prove that we are capable of responsibilities while not necessarily just adding on to our workloads. We want to highlight our desire to contribute further to the company, without seeming like a “boot-licker”. But how exactly can you do that?
From my experience, the first step towards success in the workplace would be to win the favor of your boss. Don’t get me wrong, you don’t want to be the bosses’ pet. Being submissive to your higher-ups might not land you a bigger title or responsibility. Because more often than not, they can see through your intentions. Instead, start with your attitude at work and the way you perform your current tasks.
The best advice I would give someone who is just starting out their career is to take things slow. You cannot rush success, instead perfect your tasks on hand and build a trusting relationship with your boss before you expect bigger responsibilities.
This situation reminds me of the time I used to intern at a media company. I wanted to make full use out of the experience there and participate in bigger tasks but kept getting pushed to the sidelines. I was made to do menial tasks, there were several times when I was asked to run errands for the company. I took the initiative to ask for bigger tasks, but saw no improvement in my workload. As a beginner in the industry, I felt extremely dejected and thought that I was being treated in such a way because I was unqualified for the role.
I then approached someone else with more experience in the industry and shared about my experience. He reminded me of a quote that read “Great things are done by a series of small things brought together”. This advice changed my perspective on my situation and forced me to find joy and meaning in the little contributions I made to my company.
Keeping up with this new found positive attitude towards work, I started executing my tasks well and found my bosses giving me more substantial projects to work on. Eventually, even after finishing my internship, I was still called back to work for the company!
All in all, there are no fixed steps that you should take to make your boss trust you with bigger tasks, instead it lies on your work attitude and performance. Here’s some ways you can try to adjust your mindset about work and how to help your boss gain trust in you – it might just land you your dream title!
1. Think Like a Boss
If you want your boss to give you bigger tasks, you need to put yourself in his/her shoes. Try to understand their position and why they haven’t offered bigger tasks to you yet. Use this information to guide you in the steps you should take towards more responsibilities.
In my case, I was an entry-level employee with huge expectations. Putting myself in my bosses’ shoe, I understood why she could not give me big tasks yet. At that point, I had not proved that I could execute my small tasks well, yet I was asking for bigger things. Only when I started to fully understand the company’s dynamics and mission, I was given responsibility and began to initiate new and relevant projects.
In this sense, you have to put yourself in your bosses’ shoes and understand where you stand in your company. From there, work to where you want to be and identify the steps you need to take.
2. Highlight Your Capabilities
If you’ve already been a long-term employee and are struggling to gain your bosses’ trust, it is time to highlight to them your capabilities and strengths.
I was employed as a writer for one of my jobs but I knew that I wanted to contribute more than just my role. I first began by perfecting my current job scope, which was writing articles. I performed well in the tasks and brought a substantial audience for my company. After establishing that I was good at my role, I introduced to my boss my capabilities in production as well because it was an area I wanted to explore. Again, I was initially given small production tasks, but slowly built my way up into producing my own videos.
You cannot wait for an opportunity to fall onto your lap, life simply doesn’t work that way. More times than not, you need to work your way to success. This begins by perfecting the tasks you have on hand. When you prove that you are a trust worthy employee, they might be more willing to take the gamble of giving you bigger tasks.
3. Build A Good Relationship with Your Team
More often than not, your success at work is reliant on your relationship with your colleagues and bosses. While you don’t have to be their friends, you must maintain a cordial work relationship with them balancing between humility and pride.
This would mean that you have to take note of the ways you communicate at work. Clarify expectations from your colleagues and bosses to prevent miscommunications and problems. Ask questions instead of making statements, look into other’s suggestions instead of directly opposing or supporting it. Understand the needs of your teammates, to continue working in the right direction.
These soft skills might seem menial, but plays a huge role in deciding if you are capable enough to head a bigger responsibility. Afterall, you need to have a good relationship with your team to efficiently execute projects.
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