Performance reviews come with rating systems, usually a five-point scale, with five being exceptional or excellent. The top score is hard to obtain and maintain. It’s even tougher to achieve, since managers are reluctant to give the top number to even the best employees.
What makes a person exceptional on the job? If you’re new on the job, what can you do to stand out from the crowd and show your talents? An Inc.com article suggested five ways new employees can show they are exceptional. Drawn from the experience of a Navy Seal, these tips can help any new employee shine.
The first may seem a little dishonest, but he suggests you ask how to do things, even if you think you know how. The truth is, you may not know how to do something, especially if you’ve worked elsewhere and did a similar job. Every company is different and has its own processes and procedures. One of the ways to put off co-workers and the boss is to come in and instantly tell everyone, “This is the way we did it at my last job.” Instead of being teachable and open, you can appear a know-it-all who isn’t open to change.
Volunteering for every new task isn’t just being helpful. It’s a way of learning something valuable, and even taking the opportunity to become an expert. One way to distinguish yourself early on is the willingness to take on difficult tasks or those that don’t seem to be important and then doing the very best you possibly can. Do it well, and offer to teach others the same skills. No matter what the task, do it better than you need to.
Anticipate the needs of others, and help everyone who needs it are other tips to stand out. These actions show support, interest in others and in the organization as a whole. All these tips call for a very proactive approach, interaction and relationship building. These are great if you’re a natural extrovert. If you’re not as outgoing, it may be stressful to try to take on a new persona just to prove yourself exceptional.
Instead of volunteering opinions, a new employee can learn a lot by just listening and observing. The best way to learn is by watching others and asking questions. This makes your co-workers feel important since they are the experts.
Volunteering for every job can make you look overconfident and a bit of a know-it-all. Your co-workers may not appreciate your taking the spotlight by working on as many projects as possible. Know your strengths, your limits and your place. This doesn’t mean you have to hang back and pass up opportunities. Start slowly, listen, learn and ask questions. In addition to the job, you need to get to know the company culture, your boss and co-workers to make sure you are a good fit for the job.
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