I want to be able to discuss more career related items on my blog. As a young, black, professional in “Corporate America,” I have been blessed to already have experienced a lot. I am excited to see all of the ways that my career will grow. So I thought I’d share a few tips on how to be successful at work.
My Tips on How to be Successful
Okay, so let’s get into it. I believe these tips will help anyone in any field move forward in their career. That’s what I’m defining success as. These tips will not instantly qualify you for a promotion, but they will definitely put you in the right position when the time comes.
So let’s work backwards from four to one!
#4 – Network with a purpose
Yes, it is great to network and meet people, but it is so important to network with the right people. At the end of the day, to be successful at work, you have to know the right people.
Networking relationship formula
I’ve made a little networking formula that helps to be sure you have the right people in your corner when it comes to success in the workplace.
- Sponsor – this is someone that can advocate for you when it comes to getting that promotion or the raise that you want. I do not think you have to go out and tell someone “Hey, you are my sponsor, so advocate for me when you meet with those that make the decisions.” This relationship is more understood from my experience.
- Mentor – this could also be your sponsor, but you need someone in your corner that has great knowledge of where you want to go and can coach you through different situations. I informally have a handful of mentors, and I have mentors for completely different purposes. I try and diversify with age, gender, race and position. And I also look for each of my mentors to possess different qualities and traits that I am looking to develop further myself personally.
- Decision Maker – this is some level of executive that is almost an ally to you. You don’t need a formal relationship to be established, but I think it important for you to have a decent relationship with an executive or two. You have to be very careful with these relationships as they are the decision makers of your company. There is a delicate dance that you should play. They should know the impact of the work you are doing and know a little bit about you personally.
- Teammate – these are your coworkers or colleagues at your company that may work on other teams. I think it is VERY important to have a great relationship with this group and spend some time networking with them. This really leads into my number one point into success at work.
#3 – Get organized
Organization is my jam, and personally I’ve been able to see how that has given me an advantage at work. If you are organized you can be more efficient with your work efforts. A huge advantage that I’ve found with being organized at work is that I can find and figure out answers for people really fast! My planner/notebook and my organization process helps me to know where everything is and how to direct people.
#2 – Know more than most
This is a tip that I have learned through mentoring relationships. In order to be successful in the work place, you have to know your craft. Know your craft and industry inside-out. Know the risk in the business, understand what is the sole profit driver of your business.
One way that I try and learn my business more is by networking. I try and meet with and learn about the business from the point of view of other departments. And with networking, having contacts around the company never hurts!
#1 – Be likable
Now no one is telling you to run around work being fake. Being nice has to be genuine. This is looking after people, finding common interests, helping someone out, being relatable and overall a fun person to work with. You know, just being a good human being. People have to like working with you. I feel like I should say that one more time.
PEOPLE HAVE TO LIKE WORKING WITH YOU.
Stay away from the drama at work. Drama will only bring you down and others will start to associate you with the negative instead of looking at you like you have the most potential growth. Being likable is a trait that most time is seen with good leaders. Let’s think about it, the good leaders you know are relatable, kind and know how to get sh*t done. Nonone really talks about it, but there is also an likable bias in the work place that really contributes to success.
Recently I caught a video on YouTube where this influencer was talking about how she has received her large opportunities in her career. And I was like “Wow, she knows that being kind and likable is the secret!” Yes, all of the other tips are help, but if people don’t like you, you will never the needle move and you will not be given nearly as many opportunities.
I’m going to drop her video below so that you all can see what I mean.
I hope these few tips help! I know they probably seem really general, but I promise you these are the main tips that I have noticed made a different for people.