Office Etiquette Rule Number 7: Become Excellent at Your Craft

Etiquette Rule Number 7: Become Excellent at Your Craft

When you are good at what you do, you don't have to play games. You don't have toot your own horn. But you do know how to market yourself. And marketing is different than self-promotion. Self-promotion is self-absorption. People recoil from others who talk about how great they are, and it especially sounds silly if the competence doesn't match the self-promotion.

Unlike self-promotion, marketing requires genius and creativity. It means giving yourself away to help others, rather than trying to help yourself. But first be great at what you do.

When you are good at what you do, the only extra ingredient is how to communicate. The ability to say something in one sentence without droning on before you place a period, is genius. I have learned saying something in 12 words or less is a lot more powerful than being able to give a speech to an audience of one or two people or when on a conference call.

When you are competent, you become confident. You don't have to put on the "airs." You don't have to act better than anyone else. You don't have to be smarter than anyone else. You just are. Being good makes you--one of my favorite words--relevant.

Be a rock star. Become so good at your job that people turn their heads and wonder--how does she do that? I like Lincoln's quote: Whatever you are be a good one. 

Your office needs you. But only if you are a good one.

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