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5 Ways to Be a Rock Star at Work


6/28/2011 1:44:29 PM

By Angela Rose, BioSpace.com

Thanks to movies such as “Rock Star,” “Almost Famous” and “This is Spinal Tap,” we all know what it means to be a rock star in the traditional sense. However, partying all night, sleeping all day, drinking a lot, groupies and amplifiers that go to eleven do not fit naturally within a normal, successful career. You’re never going to dive off the break room table and body surf a crowd of adoring fans from accounting (though if you do, make sure you put it on YouTube). So what does it mean to be a “rock star” at work?

1. Don’t take it too seriously.
While this doesn’t mean that you should not care about your job, it does mean that you shouldn’t sweat the small stuff. Too often we get so caught up in the minutia that we fail to keep one eye on our ultimate goal. Whatever that goal may be, your current job is a means to that end –not the sum total of your life.

2. Be solution-minded.
If a situation at the office has you stressing and worrying, you have two options. One is to continue stressing and worrying. The other is to do something about it.

3. Speak up.
Think your boss is making a big business mistake? Tell him so (tactfully, of course). In most cases, if you make suggestions in a non-threatening, yet informed manner, your boss will appreciate them. While he may proceed on his own course, he’ll remember that you spoke up and could even solicit your insight in the future.

4. Remember the saying about birds of a feather.
If you want to be a rock star at work, associate with like-minded individuals. This means inviting the woman who always gets the best projects to lunch, not hanging around the water cooler with the office whiners. You may learn something from her, while the others only serve to drag your spirits down.

5. Attitude is everything.
Maybe you’re not that excited by your position. Perhaps you’re stressed by challenges in other areas of your life. Whatever it is that’s contributing to your discontent, shove it aside and do the best job you can, every single day. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “If a man is called to be a street sweeper, he should sweep streets even as Michelangelo painted, or Beethoven composed music, or Shakespeare wrote poetry. He should sweep streets so well that all the hosts of heaven and earth will pause to say, here lived a great street sweeper who did his job well.”

If you take steps to become the office rock star, others will take notice. Don’t be surprised if co-workers invite you out to talk about what they can do to be as successful as you have become. Hmmm… maybe office rock stars do have groupies after all.

About the Author

Angela Rose researches and writes about job search strategy, career management, hiring trends and workplace issues for BioSpace.com.

Check out the latest Career Insider eNewsletter - June 30, 2011.

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