Every professional wants to do the best they can in their chosen field. They want to be promoted to the highest desirable level, they want their pay to increase systematically in line with the number of years they’ve been working, they want their professional accomplishments to be acknowledged and appreciated, and they want to feel that all the work has actually been for something.
Of course, there’s never a guarantee that you, or any other given individual, will be able to move up indefinitely in a given company. Office politics, personalities, and metrics may just not be in your favour.
But, that being said, there are certainly steps you can take in order to significantly increase your likelihood of keeping your career moving forward.
Be assertive and push for your own interests (but hold onto your manners at the same time)
It’s quite well known that assertiveness plays a major role in how likely you are to enjoy a substantial degree of professional success. People who are more assertive simply make more money, rise higher in company hierarchies, and thrive in their professional lives, to a degree that less assertive people do not.
It’s worth point out, though, that “assertive” doesn’t mean “devoid of manners”. You need to master the art of politely but firmly saying “no”, and advocating for your interests. Don’t make arrogant, sneering demands, but do push for your own interests.
Ask for promotions. Refuse requests which don’t sit well with you. And, of course, don’t hesitate to hire experienced labor and employment lawyers helping workers, if you have been subject to an accident or unjust treatment in the workplace, which your bosses turn a blind eye to.
Work diligently — hold yourself to a very high standard when you’re at the office
You shouldn’t, by any means, make a habit of working nights and weekends if there’s even the faintest possibility of you avoiding such an arrangement. Not only is this detrimental to your health, but it also impacts negatively on your productivity, and sets a bad precedent for what you’re willing to put up with on the job.
You should, however, absolutely work diligently and hold yourself to a very high standard when you’re at the office during working hours.
Do not slack off. Do not spend a minute of your working time secretly checking social media or browsing different websites. Don’t slack off and make idle conversation. Get your head down, and put in some real work. Be disciplined. People will notice, and your output will be significantly greater, not to mention your professional confidence.
Get enough sleep — it’s not a luxury it’s a performance boosting miracle cure
For too long in business, there’s been a prevailing view that sleep is something like a “luxury”, or a self-indulgence, to be enjoyed on weekends, if at all.
Serious professionals have long been expected to sleep less than they need, in order to put in more hours at the office. Those who opted to sleep more were seen as lazy.
As Matthew Walker points out in his paradigm-changing book, Why We Sleep, sleep is essential not only for health, but also for mental function, and productivity, charisma, mood, and everything else.
Get enough sleep, and you’re much more likely to do well in your career.