The amazing employee is the one who gets the biggest raises, the best promotions and the plum assignments.
You’re a good employee. You show up on time, do what’s asked and rarely take a sick day.
But would you like to be more than good? Would you like to be amazing?
After all, the amazing employee is the one who gets the biggest raises, the best promotions and the plum assignments. Not only that, the amazing employee just plain has more fun at work, because being amazing is highly satisfying.
It’s not even as hard or labor intensive as it seems. Just look for ways you can add value above and beyond what’s expected of you. For example:
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Anticipate questions and requests. A good employee always has an answer to every question. But amazing employees don’t wait to be asked; they anticipate requests and then supply answers to them, proactively.
Identify and solve problems. Speaking of proactive, want to blow your boss’s mind? Look around for problems, unmet needs, disasters waiting to happen, and then devise solutions for them. So few people think to do this. Be one of the few and you will be, yes, amazing.
Accept accountability. We all make mistakes and we all are tempted to cover them up, or at least hope they won’t come to light. But the amazing employee steps up and admits his or her error, at the same time providing not only a way to mitigate the issue but a suggestion for avoiding a repeat performance.
Improve your skills and knowledge. You don’t need to wait to be sent to a continuing education seminar to build your expertise. You can build it yourself by reading up on your industry, signing up for free or almost-free online courses, seeking opportunities to cross-train with colleagues, or joining industry or professional groups and getting to know the movers and shakers. The more you know, the more valuable/amazing you will be.
Be the calm one. Finally, composure and clear-headedness — the ability to keep cool in a crisis — are rare qualities. So rare that if you cultivate them, you will stand out. You may even be identified as a leader, whether or not you are in an actual leadership position.
In fact, it’s a good way to get into such a position — which would be pretty amazing!
Karen Burns is the author of The Amazing Adventures of Working Girl: Real-Life Career Advice You Can Actually Use. Email her at email@example.com.