Are you craving the next step in your career? Looking for ways to get noticed by your boss? Perhaps it is time to stop focusing on yourself and start focusing on how you can lift those around you. This may seem a little counter-intuitive when you are trying to shine a spotlight on your own achievements, but lifting your colleagues can have a flow-on effect when it comes to the culture of your workplace and can be a great way to demonstrate your leadership skills.
In this post I am exploring a few different ways that you can lift your colleagues, the positive impacts that this can have on your organisation and the ways in which you can use these changes to advance your own career.
The best way to lift your team mates is by providing them with some positive feedback. I am a huge advocate of providing positive feedback to others and I have seen the way it can improve relationships and increase employee engagement. Some organisations have a formal reward and recognition structure where you can nominate other employees for awards or share good news. Using one of these programs is a really easy way to give someone a pat on the back.
If your employer doesn't have a structure like this in place, you will need to be a little more proactive, but proactive doesn't have to be difficult. Here are a few ways that you can implement this idea when a formal program isn't in place:
In short, no. There is nothing wrong with passing on positive feedback to one of your team members in a one-to-one situation. My long answer is, however, that I would encourage you to at least consider using a public forum to share your commentary. I have two reasons for this.
The first, is that it is such a great way to create some excitement in your team and it gives your other colleagues the opportunity to pass on their congratulations, add to the story you are telling or maybe even give some snaps! (So, I am a fan of Legally Blonde.... sue me! Haha!)
My second reason is that once you start sharing positive feedback in front of other people, it encourages them to do the same. Your team mates will feed off your energy and this can cause a wave (or even a tsunami!) of positive feedback being shared between people who are all eager to celebrate each others' successes.
The only reason that I wouldn't share your positive feedback at a team meeting or in another group setting, is if you know that your colleague is super shy and wouldn't appreciate being the centre of attention. In that case I think the message is more powerful when shared on a one-to-one basis.
Create organisational change and get ahead by lifting those around you.
Perhaps you are still wondering how all of this can help you. I mean, it is a rewarding experience, but how can sharing positive feedback actually help you? Well, when you lift those around you, you are demonstrating several key qualities, that are sure to be noticed by your management team.
So, whilst I can't make any promises about your chances of future promotion, I know for certain that these are the types of qualities that I would be looking for in an employee, when considering their advancement.
In this article, I have spoken mainly about using positive feedback to lift those around you, as this is a really quick, easy and free way to get started. But this is only part of the puzzle. There are loads of other ways that you can promote change and positively impact your team mates. This is not just about making your colleagues happy - it is about encouraging, empowering and recognising. Some other ideas include:
If you have any positive stories about how you have lifted your colleagues or perhaps how someone else has lifted you, let me know in the comments! I would love to hear stories about how positivity is being shared in teams and how taking the lead has helped you get ahead in your career.