Whether you are starting a new course, apprenticeship, traineeship, or job, there are some steps you should take to success. They may not be the first things you think of, but they can certainly make all the difference in giving you an extra edge and pushing your ahead of the competition. At the very least, they will stop you falling out of favour!
1. Check Your Appearance
Iron your shirt or top, polish your shoes, and make sure you look smart. Your appearance says a lot more about you than you might imagine, and it is of course the first thing that people will use to judge you. You may feel that this is slightly old-fashioned, but chances are, so is your boss! Looking smart and dressing appropriately may not win you many favours, but it will stop you from falling down the pecking order.
2. Be On Time
Being late is a definite negative against your name. Make sure you know where you have to be and at what time. If you are using public transport, check the bus or train times, and if you are traveling somewhere yourself, make sure you leave plenty of time. In fact, you should try to arrive early every day – by around 15 minutes or so. By being slightly early, you will seem keen and can make sure you are ready to start the day on time. Everyone is late now and again, and sometimes this can’t be helped. If it is by more than just a few minutes call ahead and let someone know, explaining the situation. However, don’t make a habit of this – you need to show that you are reliable – and that means being punctual.
3. Put in the Effort
Just showing up is not enough to truly succeed, and so you should always try to go that extra mile. By demonstrating your dependability and loyalty to your team or colleagues, you can really start to shine. Take on some responsibility where you can (although make sure you can handle it!), and let yourself become an integral part of your workplace. Doing the bare minimum may save you from the sack, but it is unlikely to see you pushed forward for promotion!
4. Ask Questions
When you are starting a new course or job, you can’t possibly know everything already. Even if you have previously worked in a similar sector, a new job will mean new colleagues, and often a different way of doing things. Don’t be afraid to ask questions, and make sure you are doing your job properly. It is better to find out what you need to know and get things right than pretend you are fine and make a mess. Asking questions shows you are keen to learn and make sure you get things right. That said, be sure to pay attention when you are told something to save you having to ask again later. You can’t be expected to know everything right away, but if you have a new way of working or some fresh ideas don’t be afraid of putting them forward too. It will show that you are thinking about your job, rather than just going through the motions.
5. Sell Yourself
Nobody else is going to promote your skills, talents and achievements like you can. If you have done a great piece of work, don’t be afraid to take credit for it. If you are doing an apprenticeship, you will want to show what you can do in order to hopefully land a full time job at the end of it. If you are working already you will be looking to get a promotion. Let your boss know how much you enjoy the job, and how you want to progress further. If you can show that you are not just dedicated, but also add something to the organisation, then you will be proving yourself to be a valuable asset. Don’t hide your light – but let it shine so others can appreciate what you do.