7 Tips for Ambitious Employees
If you're new to your job or you're trying to launch yourself into a new career with an established company, no doubt you'll want to prove that you're a useful employee. Here are some tips to excel and prove that you're an asset in your new job.
1. Learn as much as you can; become a relative expert.
There are two levels of expertise; the true expert industry pioneer, and the relative expert. Being the pioneer is a difficult course and involves a lifetime of study, some luck and the right resources. Unless you're truly invested in that course as your passion and goal in life, chances are you're better off aiming for a relative expert level. Being a relative expert simply means being better and knowing more than the people around you so that, when they need an authority, they turn to you. Relative expertise is brilliant because you can become an expert in many subjects without 10,000 hours of study. An authority in many subjects is a valuable person to know.
2. Stop worrying and learn to love the world.
Worries, what-ifs and anxiety are signs of a problem. That problem could be internal, as in an insecurity that needs to be addressed before you can reach true ambition and success. Or it could be external; a sign of a career choice that doesn't fit your goals and your life. Learn to examine your life for signs of these anxieties, address them and move on. There are plenty of legitimate sources of stress in the world. You don't need to add more to your own plate.
3. Consider unorthodox approaches to problems.
Sometimes you have a problem and the solution you're given is slow, circuitous and inefficient. Sometimes you're given no solution and left to come up with one on your own. Coming up with an unorthodox solution can save you time, and it has the potential to be the foundation for something far greater.
4. There's a time to plan and a time to take action.
On one hand, failing to plan is planning to fail. On the other hand, if you spend your life planning you're never taking action. Learn how much planning is required to ensure a reasonable chance at success. More importantly, learn when you're spending time planning that you should be spending taking action. Thousands of brilliant products, works of art, pieces of literature and business start-ups don't exist today because their creators spent too much time planning.
5. Experience is transferable; jobs are not.
Always search for new experiences. You carry experience with you from position to position, job to job. In ten years and at another company, the fact that you filed a certain type of paperwork probably won't be relevant; the fact that you learned a new skill very well could be.
6. When searching for a new career, be careful what you ask.
This advice doesn't apply to everyone. If you're starting your own business, you don't need to worry about the interview process. If you're interviewing, however, consider this recent story of an academic woman who pushed beyond the basics and was rebuffed for her efforts. While this may or may not be an issue, there's one simple thing that she did wrong in her negotiations. That's this rule: never ask for more pay and less work at the same time. There's a time to negotiate job requirements and a time to negotiate salary. Trying to do them both at the same time leaves a negative impression and is a swift means to a lost job offer. This is not to say you shouldn't negotiate! Simply be careful when you do.
7. Invest in learning, training and education.
The foundation of a solid future is in education. No matter what happens in your job life, you can always fall back on an education. Think of education as a landing on a staircase. You may climb halfway up to the next flight, slip and tumble down the stairs, but you won't fall past the landing. You can always fall back on an education, skill training or another relevant experience.
With education, skills and ambition, there's always an open door available to you. Pick your passion and pursue your dream, pick a career and pursue your goals; whatever route you take through life, some advice applies everywhere. Success is within your grasp, if you can learn how to reach it and claim it for yourself.
Image credit: geralt (Pixabay)
Small business and marketing specialist with years of experience in the industry. He has watched as the world of online business has grown and adapted to new technologies.