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6 Traits to Help You Get Ahead At Work

If you’re not careful, office life can become monotonous, with each day rolling into the next. Certain habits are easily ingrained and it’s easy to zone into a particular mindset and become oblivious to those around you.

Next time you head into work, take the time to look around you, escape your mental bubble and really consider how you interact with your colleagues. By altering just a few of your actions and focusing on bringing certain traits into your office persona you can increase the quality and impact of your office interactions.

1. Politeness

Good manners can really go a long way and being polite costs you nothing. Whilst you should always use please and thank you, these can slip if you’re busy and stressed.

Make an effort to add these polite phrases into your daily interactions. Performing acts, like holding doors open for your juniors, as well as your superiors and offering to make a round of tea and coffee, will develop your reputation as a generous, kind person within the company.

This will then extend beyond niceties, as you’ll be viewed as someone that people are keen to work with.

2. Resilience

If at first you don’t succeed, keep trying until you’ve achieved your goal.

Getting back up when you’ve been knocked down is a key trait to success, as demonstrated by a host of the famous business leaders and entrepreneurs from J K Rowling to Bill Gates. Learning to cope with failure is a hugely important part of growing up and joining the working community.

3. The ability to say “No”

While it’s great to take on extra tasks and prove your dedication and motivation, remember that remaining realistic and not biting off more than you can chew is also incredibly important.

The ability to say no to certain tasks and to be realistically selective in your goals is an ability that comes with time and experience, but is an invaluable skill. You will never be penalized for realizing and explaining what you can and can’t do with your time.

4. Integrity

The cut-throat world of business can engender a strong sense of competition which can, at times, lead to the temptation of underhand actions and concealed information.

Keeping your integrity throughout your professional life will not only boost your own confidence, but you will be noticed by your superiors and those around you. Set your own standards and keep to them, regardless of the morals and behaviours of those around you.

5. Ambition

Whilst you don’t want to be parading an overly ambitious, ugly side of your personality, it’s important that you clearly aspire to greater heights, and have a sense of get up and go.

Ambition is the greatest of motivations, but remember that ambition doesn’t simply mean the desire to make money and achieve fame and fortune. Ambition within your chosen field, be this work volunteering for a charity or as a management consultant, is always important if you want to get ahead.

6. Kindness

If you see someone at work is struggling and you’ve got plenty of free time or expertise that could help them, give willingly and without expecting anything back.

Generosity and the desire to see others grow are traits which will stay with you for life, are likely to make you lifelong friends and will boost your inner sense of fulfilment. Whilst you should never expect anything in return, people will remember when you put in an effort to help them and will speak highly of you.

Ensure, however, that this help is given willingly; a begrudging, unwilling act of kindness is unlikely to endear you to anyone.

Thinking of hiring a career coach to help you get ahead at work? Browse our directory of career coaches and get a FREE consultation or request a personalized coach recommendation!

About the Author Alexandra Jane

Alexandra Jane writes graduate careers advice for Inspiring Interns, who specialize in matching candidates to their dream internship. Check out their graduate jobs listings for roles.