23 Ways to Build Your Reputation Like a Boss (Final Installment)
Drumroll please…. Without further ado, I present my final 8 suggestions for how to build a reputation as indestructible as a black AMEX card:
18. Dance with grace. Accept criticism — whether you feel it is deserved or not, say: “Really? Wow. I had no idea. I wonder what I’m doing that gave that impression, it was certainly not my intent.” Ask the critiquer for her advice for a specific to-do to remedy the situation. Immediately make adjustments to change that person’s perception and check back in with her later: “Hey Doreen, remember that discussion? Well, I’m so grateful you brought that to my attention. Here’s what I’ve done to correct the problem.”
19. Defer diplomatically. Respect the expertise of others by asking for help and requesting advice, which shows you don’t think you are a know-it-all. Be wide open to the idea that you can learn something from someone else.
20. Get in the Groove. Respond to the individual styles of each coworker and higher-up, and know how to adapt yourself according to the cues presented by your audience. So if your boss seems to value precision and you notice that he nitpicks documents that have careless mistakes in them, even if all the information is accurate, take the time to review it and make it perfect. Skip the slipshod for that guy. WARNING: Don’t expect other people to change their priorities to match yours.
21. Follow Up. Follow-up quickly: return phone calls, answer emails and deliver requested information, efficiently — and make it seem effortless. J was known for her fast turnaround and kept up the pace to hold onto her Speedy Gonzalez Reputation. It’s a great reputation, so don’t be telling everyone and their grandmother about your horrific workload or that you were just too busy to get back to them. Use your 40% and return that call!!
22. Channel your power. Get known for knowing something. Build up knowledge areas that will get people saying: “Oh, you want to know about how to write pitch letters? Ask Barbara, she’s a whiz.” It doesn’t even have to be a work topic. The trick to this one is to allow people to “discover” your power by dropping a few clues and samples, rather than telling colleagues everything about yourself at once.
23. Stay secure. Become sensitive to coworker’s threat threshold by observing what they say bugs them about other coworkers and avoid making the same mistakes with that person. Strive to neither threaten people by showing them up or putting them down. Don’t make excessive apologies or excuses for deficiencies you perceive in yourself.
Whatever you do, be aware of overcompensating — trying too hard to prove you are smart, prove you are dedicated, prove you are the hardest most loyal worker since Lassie. This could have people labeling you as insecure and/or trying to make everyone else look bad. Check yourself: If you feel you have something to prove, chances are you are trying way too hard. Lighten up, my friends. It’s just a job. Now go forth and build your reputation!
To check out our first two installments of this reputation cheat sheet visit: