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5 Ways to Stand Out to Employers

Unless you work for an early stage start-up or happen to hold a high-level position, you might struggle to get management to take note of your talents and accomplishments. But the more you stand out on the job, the greater your chances of snagging a promotion or raise. With that in mind, here are a few tricks for getting your employer to recognize you as the rock star you really are.

1. Volunteer for new things

It's not always easy for employees to push themselves outside their respective comfort zones, but if you make a point to volunteer for a high-profile project or initiative, you'll be sending a very strong message to your company's management team. First, you'll prove that you're not afraid of a challenge, but just as importantly, you'll make it clear that you're willing to put in the time and go the extra mile to benefit the business on a whole. And those are good qualities for others to take note of.

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2. Come up with innovative ideas and solutions

It takes guts to present new ideas to management, or to question an existing process and offer up an alternative. But if you have a way of improving your company's bottom line, or making things run more smoothly, pitching it to the powers-that-be could work wonders for your career, especially if your suggestion is actually adopted. Employers like to see workers think outside the box, so don't hesitate to share your insights -- even if it means taking the risk that your ideas might get shut down.

3. Have a positive attitude

Workplace environments can easily get stressful. Deadlines can loom, projects can get delayed, and challenges can arise out of nowhere. But if you make a point of maintaining a positive attitude in the face of all that pressure and upheaval, you'll be more likely to stand out as a star employee who's worth having on the team. The next time a wrench gets thrown in the works, be that person to reassure management that you and your colleagues will figure out a solution. Even if you don't have an actual plan right away, staying positive while those around you are losing their cool will score you major points in the long run.

4. Ask questions during companywide meetings or town halls

Some businesses have a practice of gathering all of their employees and updating them on the state of company affairs. These meetings are usually referred to as "town halls," and while their purpose is to get everyone on the same page and share key information, they often include a component where employees get a chance to pose questions to management. If you really want your employer to recognize you amid a sea of workers, make sure to ask a good question during your next companywide gathering. Better yet, include a snippet of data with that question so that your management team sees that you've really thought it through.

5. Hone one specific skill

Many workers today are used to multitasking, and while you may need to uphold that practice to succeed at your job, if you really want to get noticed, be sure to work on building one unique skill that your fellow colleagues just don't have. If you come to be recognized as that person at your company who creates killer presentations, or who knows the sales database inside and out, your name is more likely to show up on your management team's radar -- which could, in turn, advance your career.

Tempting as it may be to keep a low profile at work, you'll be helping your career in the long run by building a name that your management team comes to recognize and appreciate. Follow these tips, and with any luck, your employer will soon come to see what a valuable asset you are to your company.

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