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Promoting Yourself At Your New Job

16 Aug

A lot of my readers seem to come to this site via Google searches relating to new jobs, so I figured, in honor of my readers and to help those of you out that seem to be starting new jobs (which seems to be a lot of you), I thought I would discuss how to promote yourself at your new job. By promote yourself I mean get noticed and be seen by those around you.

So here is the scene. You landed a new, exciting job, and you just started or are getting ready to start.

First things first, remember that this transition into your new position is a chance to make changes and to prove yourself to your new co-workers. The spotlight will be on you for the first few weeks, or even months, with everyone always wondering what you are working on and how you are doing. Are you making a lot of mistakes? Are you catching on quickly to the new systems and protocols? Are you making connections with your co-workers and helping them get to know you?

Second thing to remember: the first day, week, or even month may not be that exciting. While I am sure you are ready to jump in and start working on everything, know that training and moving work to you takes time. So be patient. If you are slow, wait it out. I’m sure it will get better.

Ok, now that we have all of that out of the way I can get down to the meat and potatoes of the new job business.

Most of you know, I hope, that what you do in the first few months at your new job will either make or break you. It is in these first few months that you need to show your boss and your co-workers why you are such an asset to the company and that they should continue to invest time and money in you.

Here are some tips for promoting yourself around the office and making everyone know your worth:

HIT THE GROUND RUNNING

I know, I know, you might not be busy, and that’s ok. What I mean by “hit the ground running” is that you need to be ready and willing to get your feet wet and venture into various different tasks that you have never done before. If you find that you aren’t busy at first, go around the office and ask people for work or if they need help with ANYTHING. If you are busy, embrace it and do everything you can to keep up the pace. Your company is going to want to see that you can be productive and that you are benefitting them.

PROMOTE YOUR SKILLS

You can do this through the various assignments you have, at meetings, or in discussions with your co-workers or your boss. It is my advice to try to promote your skills – the skills that set you apart – at every chance you get. If you are a nurse and you are great with patients, make sure others notice this. If you are an attorney and are a great brief writer, volunteer to take a stab at writing a brief. If you are in sales and you are good at cold calls, make sure your boss recognizes this. While I don’t want you to go and tell someone every time you do something great – don’t be afraid to brag a little bit. For example, if you land a big client your first month on the job don’t be afraid to admit this in meeting when discussing the new account. If you don’t mention it, no one will.

GET INVOLVED

If your co-workers invite you to lunch, happy hours, conferences, etc., make sure that you go. They are inviting you because they want to get to know you and they want you to get involved. I know that going to social events with people you don’t know can be strange and awkward, but it is a part of establishing a career and expanding your network. Getting involved can even be as simple as joining the company softball team. The point is that you want to start building a connection to your co-workers right away.

UNDERSTAND THE COMPANY CULTURE

Every company has a very different culture. By culture I  mean anything from actual culture (my last company was primarily Indian dominated and so they celebrated many Indian holidays), office hours, where people eat lunch, how long they eat lunch, how people dress, whether people schmooze in the hallways, whether they go out for a drink after work, etc. Understanding all of the nuances of your new company will allow you to ensure that you are doing things in accordance with what everyone else has become accustomed to. You don’t want to be the Chatty Cathy if talking in the hallways is unacceptable.

If you are finding it hard to figure some of this stuff out, ask someone you feel comfortable talking with.

NEVER SAY NO

Even if you are slammed and have been asked if you can help out, DON’T SAY NO. Even if you have plans after work and have been asked to attend a speaking event or a happy hour or some other business-related event, DON’T SAY NO. While you don’t have to say Yes to everything the entire time you work at this new company, you need to say Yes the first few months you work there. Not only will saying yes show your dedication to the company, but it will probably give you a chance to build some relationships with your co-workers.

Dealing With Imposter Syndrome

13 Jul

Have you ever felt that you weren’t good enough, weren’t smart enough, to be doing whatever it is you are doing – whether it be a job, schooling, parenting, etc.? Have you ever worried, constantly, that someday somebody would figure you out, would find you that you are a phony and undeserving of all that you have achieved? Sure, you may be smart or hard-working, but maybe you feel that you are lacking in something that you believe others think you have, and you are worried that if they discover that you don’t have this they will think of you as a phony. If you have ever felt this then you have been a victim of what is known as Imposter Syndrome.

I know this isn’t a new topic. In fact, I read stories about Imposter Syndrome all the time here, here, and here for example. And while I have read so many articles about it I feel that this is a really important topic for career women to discuss. Not only does this so-called Imposter Syndrome make women feel unworthy of their success, but in my opinion, it holds some women back from the success they could be achieving if they didn’t feel this way.

SO WHAT EXACTLY IS THIS IMPOSTER SYNDROME?

Think about Imposter Syndrome as that bully at school or the mean older sibling that tells you that you are a loser, fat, ugly, and stupid. No matter what you do and how much you achieve that bully is always there pulling you down, telling you that you are worthless. And in return, that bully, no matter how hard you try, eventually makes you think those things about yourself. You end up feeling that all of your success has come about as a matter of luck and not because of your hard work or knowledge. You are unable to actually stand up and say, Yes, I deserve this success.

What Are Some Symptoms Of Those Who Experience Imposter Syndrome?

1.     Downplaying your accomplishments (saying that they are successful because of other people or because of pure luck, not because of you);

2.     Being afraid to speak up and take credit for something;

3.     Thinking that your success is not well-deserved;

4.     Fearing that people will discover that you are not as smart or deserving as they perceive you to be;

5.     Telling yourself, constantly, that you don’t deserve the success you have achieved;

6.     Always comparing yourself to others and wishing you were more like them and less like yourself;

7.     Feeling as if everyone else other than yourself has all the answers and knows more than you do;

8.     Being afraid to step out of your comfort zone or take on a great opportunity;

9.     A feeling that you have fooled others into believing that you are smart and knowledgable; or

10.    Setting low expectations for yourself to avoid failure.

OVERCOMING IMPOSTER SYNDROME

While I am no expert on this topic, I do think there are various ways to battle your inner demons and grab ahold of your unbearable anxieties. Here are some of my tips:

1.     Recognize That Others Really Aren’t Thinking About You

We all have a tendency to assume that others are really thinking of us, focusing on us, when the truth is that they aren’t at all. Have you ever had someone tell you that they thought you were making fun of them or ignoring them when the fact of the matter is that you weren’t even really thinking about them? While it is hard to assume that others are thinking about you, because in some ways we want others to be thinking about us, just take a look and think about how closely you really think about others. Do you spend your entire day focused on how other people have been handed success or are too stupid to be working in a particular job? Probably not, and if you do you may need some more excitement in your life.

2.     Understand That Your Fear Is Just Your Way Of Protecting Yourself From Failure

We all want to protect ourselves from anything that could come along and make us feel bad about ourselves, and the Imposter Syndrome is one way to prepare yourself for any failure that may come your way. There are people out there (the glass half empty people) that always assume the worst, and in the end they say that they are better prepared for the worst when things don’t go their way. While this may help some cope with the failures that come knocking, relentlessly, at their door, do you really want to be a glass-half-empty type of person? Do you want to spend all of your energy preparing yourself for the worst when you could be living in and celebrating the best of times?

Sometimes I am a negative person and focus on what will go wrong, but when you achieve something you shouldn’t be focusing on what others may perceive of you or what they may (or may not) find out. While I know this is the very battle that those with Imposter Syndrome are working to overcome, try to recognize that these feelings – the feeling that you are not good enough – is your body’s way of preparing you for the worst.

3.    Choose To Focus Your Energy Elsewhere

I know this may be hard, but try to push those inner demons aside when they try to tell you that you aren’t good enough and focus your attention on other things – like getting that project completed, making your client happy, writing your book, or whatever it is you are doing. If you try to tell the demon within you that you won’t give it any of your time, then eventually it will go away.

4.     Recognize That Your Aren’t Perfect

Usually people who suffer from Imposter Syndrome have unrealistic expectations of the successes they should have and are often referred to as perfectionists. Do you know someone like this or are you like this? If so you probably have times of extreme self-doubt and feel inadequate, am I right? What I am here to tell you that this is ok. It is ok to feel self-doubt and to have times where you are unsure, and if you do that doesn’t mean that you are not smart enough or hard-working enough to have achieved everything that you have. Recognizing that you are not perfect should be your first step to overcoming Imposter Syndrome.

5.     Share Your Feelings With Other Females

Chances are if you are a working woman who has achieved some success that at some point in time or another you have doubted yourself and wondered whether you really deserved it. While it may feel like something you have to deal with on your own, it isn’t. The truth is that there are tons of women out there who feel this way. Just try asking some of your successful female friends whether they have ever felt this way and discuss your feelings with them. They may give you some perspective on how to handle your anxieties and overcome your fears. I mean, what are friends for, right?

6.    Wake Up Every Morning Saying Something Great About Yourself

I know this sounds sort of silly, but the more you tell yourself that you are great, talented, smart, nice, a good friend, etc, the more you will believe it. Try leaving yourself a note the night before to wake up to the in the morning. Maybe create a jar with tons of good things to think about yourself and pull one out every morning and say it out loud and believe it. Cut out magazine quotes, book quotes, or other inspirational quotes and frame them in your office, your bathroom, or wherever you feel your most vulnerable. Do whatever it takes to encourage yourself to think highly of yourself and your achievements.

ARE YOU A SUCCESSFUL WOMEN THAT IS PLAGUED WITH IMPOSTER SYNDROME? HOW HAVE YOU COPED?

Resources:

http://www.magpie-girl.com/20091102/the-imposter-syndrome-diagnosis-and-treatment/

http://overcomingimpostersyndrome.com/

http://www.forbes.com/sites/bonniemarcus/2012/03/19/why-cant-we-just-be-real-overcoming-the-imposter-syndrome/

http://www.forbes.com/2010/02/22/imposter-syndrome-professional-fraud-forbes-woman-leadership-psychology.html

 

What To Wear To A Company Pool Party

24 May
Daytime Pool Attire

Just last week I received an email from one of the big time execs at my firm that basically invited everyone in the office, their families, and children to a pool party. I thought nothing of it at first, but once the women around the office began talking about whether or not they would be wearing a bathing suit to the pool party, I soon realized that having to attend a work related pool party can be a bit awkward. I mean surely the executives wouldn’t want to see me sunning in a bikini, and I sure don’t expect to see them in their swim trunks either (hopefully!).

So, what is appropriate to wear to a work related pool party? Obviously I think it depends on what type of event it is going to be. Is it going to be sort of fancy where everyone just eats and drinks around the pool? Is it going to be very laid back? Is it at night or during the mid-afternoon? The party I was invited to is mid-afternoon and very casual and will even have a food truck there. I am still not quite sure what I am going to wear and whether I think wearing shorts is appropriate, but here are some ideas:

Wearing a pair of long shorts or even shorter shorts with a nice blouse and sandals would be perfect for sitting outside and enjoying everyone’s company. The first outfit to the left above is a great example. The white shorts are summery and yet still not too revealing. This type of outfit would be perfect if you were unsure of what to expect at the pool party or completely unaware of how everyone else will be dressed.

If everyone will be wearing a bathing suit, the middle outfit would be perfect. Yes, I know it is a one-piece bathing suit, but it is cute and conservative enough if you pair it with a mid-thigh length skirt and cute sandals. While I would probably still feel uncomfortable in this around my co-workers, if you work in a more laid back environment or with a bunch of young people this may be just the perfect outfit for you.

I always think wearing a cute sun-dress is safest way to go when you are invited to a work related summer party. The green Flared Dress from Etsy above is so adorable that I have seriously considered buying it myself. Pairing the cute green sun-dress with some cute wedges and a big floppy hat would be perfect for a company pool party.

What do you guys think? Have you had to decide what to wear to a company pool party?

Flared dress
$58 – etsy.com

Custommade silk tank top
799 DKK – musthaves.dk

Joe’s Jeans short shorts
$139 – zappos.com

MICHAEL Michael Kors swimwear
$108 – michaelkors.com

Jack Wills tulip skirt
$80 – jackwills.com

Rosegold leather sandals
$158 – nordstrom.com

Sam Edelman leather sandals
$110 – coggles.com

Gabriella Rocha summer sandals
$36 – zappos.com

Kendra Scott dangle earrings
$58 – endless.com

Astley Clarke pink jewelry
$180 – astleyclarke.com

J Crew beach hat
$38 – jcrew.com

Heidi Klein raffia cowboy hat
$130 – matchesfashion.com

It’s Friday!

17 May
Casual Friday Outfits of the Week

Preen short sleeve silk shirt
£479 – farfetch.com

J Crew slim shirt
$98 – jcrew.com

Mexx short blazer
€100 – mexx.eu

Madewell mid length skirt
$88 – madewell.com

Aubin Wills cotton skirt
$105 – net-a-porter.com

Sam Edelman wedge heels
$225 – stanwells.com

MICHAEL Michael Kors logo messenger bag
£200 – harveynichols.com

Clear jewelry
$23 – fantasyjewelrybox.com

H M chain jewelry
£5.99 – hm.com

Chic Work Attire

16 May
Chic Work Attire
What do you guys think of my new Polyvore creation? I recently discovered this fabulous website and am absolutely hooked on putting various items together to make the perfect outfit. This outfit represents the chic in all of us. Can you just imagine how that black dress with a great pair of black pumps will make you feel? Surely that outfit would give any woman the confidence she needs to walk into a meeting and grab everyone’s attention. The dress is from the UK and is kind of pricey, but there are plenty of similar options for less.
And what about that satin blouse? I always find myself searching through stores trying to find the perfect work blouse. Nothing can make a boring old suit or plain black pants look better than a cute blouse. I think this blouse has the perfect mix of girly and sophistication to make it absolutely perfect for work. AND can you believe it is only 23? I wonder if the quality as good as it looks. Hmm.
 

Alice Olivia cap sleeve cocktail dress
£215 – oxygenboutique.com

Pullover shirt
$23 – pacificplex.com

Karen Millen knee length black skirt
£105 – houseoffraser.co.uk

Christian Louboutin patent pumps
$625 – net-a-porter.com

Louis Mariette brooch
$207 – net-a-porter.com

Tasha hair accessory
$28 – nordstrom.com

H M hair accessory
£1.99 – hm.com

Chanel eye makeup
$47 – amazon.com

Polka dot bow tie back
£2 – dorothyperkins.com

Happy Admin Day!

25 Apr

Just a reminder that today is Professional Administrative Day. Don’t forget to thank those people who help you do those impossible tasks every day and deal with your crankiness and annoying requests.

Thanks to my hubby, who sent me a text early this morning, I bought a card, a gift card, and a cupcake for my wonderful assistant, Terri. Remember to say Happy Admin (Secretary’s) Day to all of the Admins out there and remind them that you couldn’t do what you do without them.

What did you get your administrative assistant today?

 

Thank You For The Support

3 Apr

I wanted to send a quick thank you to all of my followers and supporters for reading my blog posts and forwarding them on to others. In just two months Mrs. Professionalism has had over 2,000 views, which is exciting. Thank you to all the positive comments and negative comments, your clicks on Mrs. Professionalism and your Google searches for Mrs. Professionalism. No matter your reason for viewing this site, your continued views of the blog posts really help this site out. Looking forward to reaching 5,000.

Thanks Again!

Working Wifey