Becoming the go-to employee for a department and/or company is tough. There are many benefits for workers who are considered the best by their managers. The easy answer to becoming a top performer is to get your work done on time, with little guidance, and without throwing a fit. However, there is more to it, so I will provide more depth.
Make sure to be receptive to work
I've been to many meetings where leaders and managers are looking for volunteers to participate on mission-critical projects. Surprisingly, there are often few takers. In most cases, the work is assigned because no one is willing to step up to the plate.
A good approach is to be proactive. I recommend that you stay connected with your manager. You can take this angle: "Hi, Nicole... I heard that the leaders are looking for people to participate on the compliance project. I wanted to let you know that I will make the time to be on the team. I understand that I must keep up my regular work, and that will not be a problem."
Managers appreciate it when people volunteer for work, especially projects that are of high-value to the organization. Let's assume that you're not selected for the project because you lack the unique experience and skills required. You can rest assured that your manager will be pleased with your commitment to do what it takes to help the company do well.
Stay away from the petty stuff
The most successful people in any organization operate at a level that is free from pettiness. They are focused on the work that must get done. When someone falls shorts of expectations, they avoid blaming the person. Instead, they go to the individual and ask how they can help with future work.
It's smart to take a problem-solving approach. When most people are complaining about why they're not advancing, we can take a proactive approach to finding the answers. I want to remind you that one's compensation is based on the level of problems they solve. The easier it is to find a solution, the less one will make. However, the people who solve the big problems earn the highest possible pay.
The Game Plan
Before you decide to become a top performer, you must know that it will increase the level of work that you perform. Also, at some point, you will be assigned highly-visible work, which means that you will interact with high-level people. The benefits of doing this type of work is obvious, but be aware that there is little room for error.
To get the ball rolling, look for opportunities to volunteer on projects. Your manager will know if you can handle the work. If the manager has doubts that you are ready for the work, but you feel that you are, make your case. There's a big need for individuals who are willing to accept challenges. As you get busier with work that is valuable to the organization, you will realize that you no longer have time for the petty stuff that plagues many organizations. This is when you know that you're heading in the right direction.
Dr. Jimmie Flores, PhD, MP, ITIL, SSBB, SPHR, GPHR is a seasoned organizational development and continuous improvement professional with 20 years of experience. In 2006, he founded the Flores Consulting Group, a company based in San Antonio, TX. Dr. Flores is also an expert in project management, ITIL, Six Sigma, Entrepreneurship, and Sports Officiating. He writes a weekly article regarding project management, career management, and the like. Visit his blog, Blog Kool Derby.© 2019 Dr. Jimmie Flores
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