If you work a full-time job, chances are you’re at work with the same group of people for 40 hours (or more) a week. Whether you work in a small or large office, you’ll be seeing your co-workers and employers more than most of the other people in your life. If you’re spending that much time around people in a professional setting, shouldn’t your reputation matter? Having good relationships with your boss and co-workers is important while at work. It can help you move forward in your career while also making the office a better place for everyone. Here are 20 tips that you should follow to boost your reputation at work.
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While appearances may not always be the most important thing, in an office setting, they’re hard to ignore. Wearing the appropriate clothing at work shows that you’re mentally present and that you’re willing to take the extra time to get ready before going into the office.
Someone that showered and is wearing suitable clothing undoubtedly looks better than someone that threw on a pair of sweatpants and flip-flops on their way out of the door. If you are regularly wearing clothes that don’t fit your company’s culture, you’ll come off as careless about your appearance or the effort of your co-workers.
Watch Your Language
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After getting comfortable around your co-workers, you may find your language becoming increasingly casual. Instead of asking questions about work, you may find yourself swapping stories about your glory days in college or what you did over the weekend. Causal conversations such as this might even lead you to say a few curse words.
While the acceptance of cursing and overly-casual conversation depends on a company’s culture, for the most part, it’s safer not to take any chances. According to CareerBuilder.com, 81 percent of employers find that swearing “brings an employee’s professionalism into question.” Nothing bad will come from you keeping your language as professional as possible in the workplace.
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Asking questions is one of the best ways to show your co-workers and boss that you genuinely care about your job and your performance. It demonstrates that you have a desire to learn and that you care enough to make sure that things are done correctly.
Sometimes, asking questions can seem daunting, but not being afraid to do so tells a lot about your character. Even if you think a question may sound stupid, ask anyway because it’s better to learn and do something right than end up doing it wrong because you didn’t want to ask.
Remember Your Co-Worker’s Names
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When someone remembers your name after only meeting once or twice, it’s a good feeling. It shows that the person listened to what you were saying and made an effort to remember your name in preparation for the next time you see each other. Remembering your co-worker’s names whether you’re new or work in a big office is something that people will notice right away and appreciate.
It shows that you respect them as an individual and you genuinely care about who they are and what they are saying. Remembering people’s names will also help you avoid awkward situations around the office that might come up otherwise.
Give Credit To Others For Their Work
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While being recognized for your work is essential for your career, it’s equally important to recognize your co-workers for their performance as well. Few things are more annoying than a fellow worker that takes credit for everything and is always trying to get ahead of others.
It makes you seem as though you aren’t a team player and will make it so that nobody wants to work with you. However, giving credit to others doesn’t mean that you have to be condescending or overly congratulatory. Simply giving credit where credit is due is the perfect amount, and people will appreciate you for it.
Avoid Office Gossip
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Gossip surrounds us whether it’s among our friends, family, or even at work. While at times you may have the urge to participate in office gossip, it’s best to avoid it altogether. Nothing good can come of being a known office gossiper. People will be less likely to open up to you, and you can be seen as untrustworthy or disrespectful.
Gossip isn’t beneficial in any situation, but in a professional environment like the workplace, you should be extra mindful. If you’re up for a promotion, a boss might reconsider their decision after learning that you participate in office gossip because it shows a lack of regard for others and a tendency for immature behavior.
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Being on time for work is a crucial part of developing your professional reputation. Nobody will think that you take your job seriously if you’re always coming into work either late or at the last minute. Showing up a few minutes early will show that you’re ready for the work day and that you can properly manage your time to be punctual. Getting to work on time also shows that you value the time of your company and that you can keep your word.
This doesn’t just apply to your arrival at work either. If you have a meeting, a lunch appointment, or anything else work-related, the same rules apply. Always arrive a little early and come prepared.
Have An Open Mind For Others’ Ideas
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Contributing ideas and listening to others is a crucial aspect of any job. They are both important in their separate ways. However, it is essential that you have an open mind to others’ ideas. If you’re constantly shutting down other people’s opinions, others are less likely to share, and you can be viewed as a “know-it-all” or a “Negative Nancy.”
If you make an apparent effort to hear others out and ask questions about their ideas, it proves that you respect what they have to say. Even when you don’t agree with someone’s opinion, it’s important to try and compromise or use communication effectively.
Express Yourself Professionally
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Much like watching your language, professionally expressing yourself is equally as important. It is crucial to be articulate when expressing your opinions and ideas. This means avoiding fillers such as “um” and “uh” and choosing your words wisely to get your point across as direct as possible. Stumbling over your words or not knowing how to properly articulate your thoughts shows a lack of confidence and knowledge about what you’re talking about.
This isn’t just for typical office conversations either. If you’re in charge of presenting something or speaking in front of a group, practice beforehand and be prepared. This way you’ll be comfortable and confident when the time comes.
Don’t Come Into Work Sick
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If you’re sick, there’s no shame in working at home or taking the day off to recover. It’s likely that any work you try to get done at the office when sick will be sub-par and therefore a waste of time and energy. Furthermore, nobody at your office wants to be around somebody that’s sick. Everyone would prefer that you stay home until you feel better or aren’t contagious.
This way, they don’t have to hear you sniffling and coughing, and there is less of a chance of them getting sick themselves. It shows respect for you co-workers’ space and health if you know when it’s no longer appropriate to be at work.
Manage Your Emails
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Communication plays an essential role in a functioning office. Today, email and other online messaging platforms are typically used for communication. Although they may not be as effective as a face-to-face conversation, it is still vital that they are treated as equally important.
This means responding quickly to time-sensitive subjects and regularly checking to see if you have any new messages that require your attention. A basic rule of thumb is to respond to all emails within 24 hours and if you don’t have an answer at the moment let the person know instead of just not replying.
Offer Help To Others
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As important as it is to ask for help while at work, it is also beneficial to offer to help others. Whether it is work-related or not, helping your co-workers makes them feel valued and let them know that you’re more than just someone they sit next to at work. It is a way for you to get to know your co-workers on a more personal level which will help increase morale in the office and develop friendships.
Whether it’s lending a hand on a project, giving positive feedback, or even giving someone a ride home after work, it’s advantageous for everyone and will make the office a more comfortable place.
Maintain A Clean Desk
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The condition of someone’s desk says a lot about their personality just like the inside of someone’s house or car. A disorganized desk implies a disorganized mind and a lack of respect for others that have to see it every day. If you have an organized and clean desk, it shows that you care about your job and how others around the office perceive you.
To keep a professional-looking desk, it’s crucial that you have systems put in place whether it’s for your papers or other items you need to do your job. Also, it helps to keep everything you need within arm’s length so you have easy access to it and can find it when you need it.
Watch Your Cellphone Use
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Although most offices aren’t extremely strict on cellphone use, there’s an extent to which it becomes inappropriate and unprofessional. It’s easy to tell when someone is using their phone for actual communication or are merely on it because they’re bored.
When someone is blatantly on their phone instead of working, it makes them look like they care more about what’s on social media than their actual job. This is not something you want your employer or co-workers to notice. A trick is to put it in a bag or your pocket, so you’re not as tempted to use it out of habit.
Meet Your Deadlines
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What’s the point of hiring someone if they never meet their deadlines or get their job done correctly? Meeting deadlines is one of the biggest things that can either make or break your reputation at work. Your performance at work will also significantly affect your relationships with both your co-workers and boss.
Your fellow employees won’t want to associate with a slacker, and your boss might reconsider your position at the company. The way to ensure that you always meet your deadlines is to be diligent at work, always try and work ahead, and don’t be afraid to ask questions.
Don’t Be A Complainer
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Nobody likes a complainer; it’s a fact of life. If you’re having trouble at work or don’t agree with something, complaining doesn’t fix anything. Although complaining or venting may feel therapeutic, it can tarnish your relationship, and you’ll be labeled as a complainer.
You don’t want to be seen as someone who dwells on the past and can’t come up with adult solutions to their problems. Otherwise, others in the workplace may think that you’re incapable of dealing with a challenge or assume that you complain about everything, including them.
Your Body Language Says A Lot
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Another dead giveaway about how you feel about your job is your body language. If you have good posture, and look attentive and focused, people are going to assume that you’re hard at work. If your feet are up, you slouch in your chair or look disinterested; it’s obvious that you’re bored and wish you were anywhere else.
Although you don’t have to have the posture of the Queen of England, it’s clear when you’re conscious of your body language or if you’ve given up entirely. A little bit of effort goes a long way and an employer notices who’s sitting up straight and who’s about to fall asleep at their desk.
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While most people don’t thank their boss every day for their job when leaving the office, there are other ways to show your appreciation. You can do this by being the best employee that you can be which will significantly strengthen your reputation with the boss. Do your job efficiently and correctly, be respectful, don’t complain, and be a team player.
Employers can see an employees gratitude by seeing how they act during work and the kind of work that they produce. Furthermore, a study by UC Davis psychology professor Robert Emmons showed that gratitude helps to regulate relationships as well as strengthen them.
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Completing assignments on time and doing a good job is a great way to build your reputation. However, exceeding your bosses and others expectations is even better. Working as hard as you can to get ahead at work and turning in high-quality work is the best way to impress your employers.
This can also prove that you may be ready for more responsibility and a possible promotion. By consistently doing this, you will be demonstrating your worth, and you will be considered a valued employee among the higher-ups as well as your co-workers.
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Even if you get to work on time, dress accordingly, work hard, and produce results, your reputation at work still won’t be the best it could be if you don’t have any enthusiasm. If you’re the best worker in the office but look miserable all day, people are going to notice. It would almost be better not to be the best worker but have the best attitude.
That’s something that people are going to notice and appreciate about you. You’ll help bring the energy in the office up, and you’ll be the person that people come to for questions or to socialize with. If you can find passion in your job, it will go a long way in making you and the rest of your office happy.