11 Things Most People Don’t Bother to Do, that You Could Do, and Get Massive Results
Do you want to stand out at the office?
Are you eager to make a difference?
I talk to people all the time who are looking for ways to get ahead or make a good impression where they work. If you can relate, you're not alone.
To help you make a positive different and stand out, I figured I'd share a few of my best tips to help you become a rock star at work.
I've been “the new guy” several times in my life.
Most of those times I was walking into an established team where I was expected to quickly ramp up and mesh with a group of people who already knew each other and who had been working together for a long time.
I quickly learned that trying to prove my own intelligence would not win me any friends.
I also learned being new can be a blessing and not everyone gets better with age.
But over the years, I learned there are several simple things most people don't even bother to do, that if you were to do them, could give you massive and positive results.
1: Read a non-fiction book
I love fiction books and read them on occasion. Actually, I listen to them on audiobook. But listening to fiction books typically won't get you positive results at work.
Statistically, if you read one book this year, just one, you'll be better off than most Americans.
If you don't like Amazon, find a Half-Price books or another used bookstore and pick one up. I even give away books to listeners occasionally on my podcast.
My point is, start reading.
2: Show up early and do not stay late
When I first entered the business world I had no idea there was a difference between coming in early and staying late.
But there is.
A big difference in fact.
Coming in early tells your peers and your manager you're eager to get going. Being early says you're ready for the day and a go-getter.
Showing up early is a good thing.
Staying late tells everyone you're busy. So busy that you can't get everything done during the given time.
If you're staying later than everyone else it tells your team you're slower and that maybe you can't keep up.
Starting early means you're eager, staying late means you don't have boundaries.
Whether these things are true or not is irrelevant. Perception is reality, and the reality you want to project is that you're eager, not that you can't get your work done.
3: Read an industry related magazine
Almost every industry has a related magazine. I'd be willing to bet if you kept a relevant magazine on your desk or work area, you'd get some funny looks because no one else even knew what it was.
Spend the $5-$8 on a related magazine, read it, then share something interesting with your peers.
4: Share industry news with your team
I don't watch the news. The local news here in Austin starts talking about the elderly lady who finally got her cat back whenever there's nothing catastrophic to report.
But if learned one thing, just one, about what's going on in your industry, you'd be in the elite.
“Did you see that Company X just launched their new product? What do you think about it?”
“I read in Relevant Magazine that new technology is coming out that will allow us to ____. What do you think about that?”
Those two conversation starters will show your team you know what's going on and that you're a person who can take the business into the future.
5: Share knowledge about a competitor's product and how to compete with it
It's a rare occasion that I can ask a sales person about their competitor's product and have them come back with an intelligent answer.
You don't have to be the expert, but at least be able to tell me why your product or service is better or different.
Doing this will set you a part.
If you studied the competitors offering and shared your competitive advantages with your boss… shoot, their mind would be blown and you'd probably be taken out to lunch.
While I don't usually volunteer, (I prefer to tithe and give money to the church) setting up a team volunteering opportunity would show everyone you're socially conscious and you care for others.
Some employers may even let you volunteer on company time as it shows the community the company cares. Good PR for the company – good PR for you.
7: Go to lunch with your peers
Several months ago I got a new teammate named David. Since I knew we'd be working together, I asked David if he wanted to grab lunch in the cafeteria downstairs.
We scheduled it, had a casual lunch, and became work buddies. We even became a better team because of it.
Outside of your core group of friends, have you ever had lunch with a co-worker? It's a great way to connect with new people.
8: Start a lunch book club
One of the best ideas I had while working in corporate America was starting a book club.
I was able to meet new people and get new perspectives.
Not only was starting a book club fun, but it became part of my personal brand. I became known as the book guy and I'd often get asked how it was going and have people tell me they wished they could join.
(They rarely did because they couldn't manage their time) =)
9: Attend one event outside of work
I recently discovered the Chamber of Commerce.
I know, I know, they've been around for forever, but I'd always thought Chambers of Commerce were for old men who sold real estate or insurance. But since starting two businesses, I've found they're a good way to network and test ideas.
Another event I'd recommend is the EntreLeadership One Day events put on by Dave Ramsey and his team.
Last year about this time, a friend and I attended one of Dave's events here in Austin. We had fun, learned a good bit, and it only cost us $100.
10: Be ok with being weird
By definition, if you're normal, you can't be weird. If you're normal, you can't be awesome.
Every successful person is an exception to the rule and lives outside of what we'd call “normal.”
If you want to stand out, make a positive impression, and be successful, you have to be ok with being weird. (Tweet That!)
While at my corporate gig, I earned two awards that no one else received while I was there: Sales Rep of the Year and Sales Rep of the Quarter.
I earned those two by doing the things on this list and by being ok with being weird.
Normal people don't win gold medals. Normal people don't start businesses that change the world. (Tweet that!)
Be ok with being weird.
11: Ask how to advance and take on more responsibility
There's no better way to figure out how to stand out than by asking your boss.
Go to your boss and say,
Boss, I really want to do an awesome job and be seen as a leader on the team. Is there anything I could be learning or something I could take off your plate to help the team?”
Boom. Done. Rock star status incoming!
These are just a few of the things I've done to stand out and be successful, but this is only the beginning!
While these eleven things are easy, most people don't even bother to do them. I know that if you were to do them, you could get massive and positive results.
Question: What have you done that's helped you stand out? What is stopping you from picking one of these things and doing it this week?