How to Stand Out in the Workplace without Being Pushy

Standing out in the workplace without appearing showy or aggressive is easier than you might imagine. It’s often also a very good idea. Experienced managers and senior staff may distrust “conspicuous self promoters”, with good reason. They tend to be more noise than substance. Employers value actual achievements, not the appearance of achievement.

How to stand out


There are some very reliable ways of making your point about your abilities, and standing out clearly:

  • Quality of work: Consistently good work will get noticed. Employers and managers pay attention to standards of work, and inevitably make comparisons with others.
  • Additional work values: Adding value to your work, with additional materials, or useful content in your work products, is another sure sign of a standout employee.
  • Positive contributions: Voluntary contributions, ideas, concepts, or acting as a fixer of situations, are all indicators of a valuable staff member.
  • Problem solving: All jobs have their problems, and all staff who can fix problems provide valuable service. Those who can solve problems for themselves also save the employer time, money and effort.
  • Anticipating issues: The hallmark of the expert is seeing problems before they arise. That particular ability does stand out on its own. Knowing the issues, and creating the solutions in advance, sets you apart.
  • Training others: This is a common function for experienced, trusted staff, and is a further indicator higher skills. If you’ve also been training excellent workers, you stand out in this area as well.
  • Project work: This type of work is an excellent chance to show what you can do, and prove your abilities beyond doubt.
  • Higher duties: Doing a higher duties job well strongly reinforces your credentials in the workplace.
  • Employee awards: You’ll accumulate a few of these, over time. They do count as official recognition of achievements.

You’ll have noticed one common element in all these situations: These are all solid, irrefutable proof of ability and reliability. Competent managers promote people on the basis of knowing their staff and their capabilities.

Success without Being Pushy

You’ll see in the course of your work, that because you’re a good, reliable worker, you get more respect and more attention from your co-workers. The high quality work makes you the person who’s asked for advice, and whose judgment is trusted. Your colleagues are acknowledging your abilities.

You will also become valued as the better option for important work by management. Some special jobs have to be done by experts, and that’s where you’ve managed to stand out better than anyone else. This is a mark of acknowledgment and vote of confidence from the employer, and it will be favorably recognized as such by the other staff.

Notice also that being pushy had absolutely nothing to do with this success. You’re going to be in line for promotion because you’re the right person with the right credentials and an excellent track record to back it up. Nobody will be surprised at your promotion. Many will say it’s overdue.