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5 Ways to be an Outstanding Employee

February 17, 2022

Have you recently started a new job and are looking for ways to make the best first impression? Or maybe you’ve been in a job a while now and want to be first in line for the next internal promotion.

Lets assume that you are already doing the bare minimum of turning up on time, fulfilling your workload and avoiding disciplinaries, what are the extra attributes you should have in order to shine as an outstanding employee?

1. Take job descriptions with a pinch of salt 

Being adaptable and ready to muck in where required and do whatever it takes, regardless of role or position, is a sure way to get noticed by your employer.  Remarkable employees have the initiative to know when there’s a problem and the energy to lend a hand without being asked — even if it’s not their job.  Without assuming a senior role they think at a higher level than their job requires, anticipating the challenges their line manager is facing and smoothing the way.

2. Don’t be scared to be different 

The best employees are often a little different: eccentric, quirky and sometimes irreverent, but in a good way. They shake things up, make work more fun, they aren’t afraid to stretch boundaries and challenge the status quo, so they often come up with or identify the best ideas.  Outstanding employees know when to play and when to be serious; when to be outspoken and when to yield; when to challenge and when to back off.  It’s a tough balance to strike, only those who are really outstanding can walk this fine line.

3. Publicly praise and privately complain  

Praise from a boss means a lot. Praise from a respected peer means more.  Outstanding team members look for opportunities to publicly recognise the contributions of others, in settings where the impact of their words is most valued.  Mediocre employees may attempt to elevate their status by bringing up controversial subjects in a group setting, whereas outstanding employees think ahead and raise the sensitive issue privately.

4. Look to learn and grow

Some employees are never satisfied, they are always seeking out ways to improve themselves and business by looking at the bigger picture.  Outstanding employees will willingly deviate from established processes if they believe they can find ways to make those processes even better.  They will ask the questions that others dare not raise.  They believe in better and refuse to accept adequate, constantly keeping an eye out for development and growth opportunities. 

5. Value your values

Too many employees leave their personal beliefs at the factory gate.  Outstanding employees choose to work for organisations that reflect their principles and even under commercial pressure they resist compromise.  In turn they positively influence their organisation from within to act responsibly.

There are a number of ways that you can position yourself positively within the workplace, these tips can help you to stand out within your organisation.

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