Thirty percent of our lives will be spent working. Why not make this thirty percent work for us? We all have choices. What we put into something is what we get out of it. What we focus on, is what we will create. Simple as that. What is the down side of using time at work constructively, instead of counting the hours until it is time to go home, or being unmotivated at work? Simple changes make a significant difference.

Here are some immediate steps you can take to woo your boss and to accelerate your career:

  • Be grateful. Show gratitude to your employer. Thank them for employing you and for paying you each week. This is rarely done. Employers don’t forget those employees that thank them.
  • Don’t be a clock watcher. Arrive early, and stay a bit later to finish a job. Remind yourself that you are lucky to have a job, and be generous with your time.
  • Dress for success. If you look sloppy, this will reflect in how people view your work. What do you look like to clients?
  • Keep clean. Obvious, but often forgotten. Many employers ask for assistance to address body odour and bad breath in one of their employees. Hardly a recipe for success at work.
  • Smile and be cheerful at work. Fake it till you make it. Most employers overlook a grumpy staff member when it comes to promotions. You may be good at what you do, but if you make people around you feel depressed or grumpy, you will not succeed at work. People remember how you make them feel more than what you do. There is a happiness advantage.
  • Be kind. Help others when they need it. Employers notice kindness to others, and reward it. Kindness to others will also make you feel better.
  • Keep healthy and fit. Sickness and absenteeism is not valued. Employers notice who looks after their health, and who stays fit. Employers also notice those who take all their sick leave, and those who don’t. It is fatal to enquire how many sick days you have owing. To an employer this looks as though you are planning a ‘fake’ sick day.
  • Be Confident but not too much. While it is important to exude confidence, employers do not like employees who are full of themselves.
  • Listen. So much can be gained from properly listening. Practice this skill. Have you really understood what your employer has asked of you?
  • Take Responsibility. Don’t blame others when things go wrong. Accept responsibility for mistakes. Employers notice and value employees who acknowledge their mistakes, and come up with strategies to prevent them happening again.
  • Be a Team Player. Trouble makers don’t get promoted. Even if you are good at your job, if you are perceived as being prickly, you will be side-lined when it comes to pay rises and promotions.
  • Identify your strengths. Invest in the Gallup strength finder test or the VIA test to identify what you are good it, and leverage off your strengths. Self-awareness accelerates work place success.
  • Manners. Old fashioned respect and manners will make you stand out from the crowd. Your employer has chosen and invested in you, respect him or her for their belief in you.
  • Be fair. How much of your employer’s time do you waste each day? Think about the time you may spend on trade me, internet banking, social media, or texting. What about time talking to others about non-workplace matters. Is it fair to be paid to do this? Do you come to work after a boozy night, half engaged? Are you value for money when you do this?
  • Get some passion for what you do. Try reading the Fred Factor by Mark Sanborn. A true story about a mailman, showing how you can change the ordinary into the extraordinary. How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.