If you’ve ever worked in an office, you know things can seem like a circus more often than not. From juggling multiple tasks to balancing the work-life tightrope, it can be difficult to find your place and standout in this type of office environment, especially if you are a new employee or a problematic one looking to mount a comeback.
The transition from just another worker bee to a workplace leader isn’t easy; it takes time, dedication, and skill. So, how do you rise above the noise and commotion to become the ringleader of the office, and not just another nameless employee? Here are seven components of becoming the ringleader of your office circus.
Stand out in the crowd
If you are an employee looking rise up, the first thing you must do is make a positive impression. To do this, you must not only meet expectations, but routinely exceed them. The best way to demonstrate a desire to move into a leadership role is to consistently deliver superior work. With this, you also need to broaden your interaction with the business/company as a whole outside of your team or department.
Build a fanbase
You can’t get to the top alone. Collaboration and compatibility are key. When co-workers like and support you, it shows that you are courteous and easy to work with. People are drawn to leaders, so you must exude the necessary leadership traits with them, including hard work, enthusiasm, motivation, and consideration. Leaders should approach every meeting focused not only on results, but also on building healthy relationships.
Find a mentor
But a fanbase cannot only consist solely of low-level employees and peers. You have to be able to catch the attention of those already above you in management roles—even better if they are willing to take you under their wing in a mentorship role. Ask them questions, watch how they interact with others, study their methods—use this interaction to not only further your career, but also develop your own management style.
A true leader is constantly thinking—how to improve this process or that one, does this make sense for the company as a whole, how can we better anticipate needs, etc.? There is a neverending quest to better your company and add value. Leaders must take on this burden and discover the root cause of problems in order to successfully fix them.
The words and actions of an office leader have a significant impact on the overall office culture and morale. Leading by example is the best way to ensure your office runs happily and efficiently. To set a positive and productive tone, leaders need to give clear direction, communicate effectively, avoid distractions, be unbiased and supportive, acknowledge great work, and dedicate time towards team building.
Focus on communication
Communication skills are an essential part of building relationships. Communication is about more than just what you say, it is also about how you listen. Listening is more than waiting for your turn to talk, it is about truly showing interest and trying to understand what the person is actually saying. And communication doesn’t have to be all about business. Being a good communicator at the water cooler or getting coffee with co-workers is a great way to show a genuine interest in someone’s life in and outside of the office.
There is no better way to improve yourself throughout your career than through continued education. No matter your field or position, there is a wide variety of courses available online that cover a vast array of topics and skills, some of which are free.
If you want to see yourself as the ringleader in your office circus, you must fully commit to all that it encompasses. You cannot be passive as an employee, but rather, you must immerse yourself completely, so you can evolve into a true leader.