Maxwell Stephens

Are you a closet work superstar?

Do you ever sit at your desk, staring into space, wondering what your boss, colleagues, and other stakeholders really think of you? In most British organisations, feedback is not often particularly forthcoming, and when it is, you can be fairly certain that it will be shrouded in diplomacy. To compensate, most organisations have a yearly performance review, but most of these evaluation systems are based on fairly compact scales – typically 1-4 or 1-5. Most of these systems are bell curves in terms of the distribution of scores. So let’s say you believe you are a great employee and on a 5 point scale you achieve a 1 which is the best you can achieve – even with most of your peers achieving a 3, you will still likely be among 5-10% who score a 1. So how can you tell if you really are a work superstar? What are the signs that you are really rather amazing?


  • People want to work with you

You notice that you are invited to a lot of meetings, your input is requested on various pieces of work, and perhaps your business stakeholders specifically ask your line manager for you to support them with on their tasks and projects.


  • People look at you

Not in a creepy way – but in meetings you notice that when you speak your peers are attentive and look up from whichever mobile device they have been tapping away on. Also, when a peer speaks you notice that they look in your direction as if seeking your reassurance and approval for what they are saying. By giving a little nod and smile, your peer seems to have a new found confidence in what they were saying.


  • People dread your annual leave

When you take annual leave, your line manager, colleagues and/or stakeholders seem a little uneasy and are keen to know exactly when you will be back, and if you will be contactable whilst you are away. You may also spot that they look uncharacteristically happy when you arrive back from your holiday.


  • You get what you ask for

You notice that the requests you make of your line manager tend to be agreed far more readily in comparison to your peers. This could be requesting holiday, leaving a little early for the doctors, or even asking for a raise.


  • You are second in command

Your line manager asks you to manage the team when they take annual leave, and you you are given as a back-up contact to senior stakeholders when your line manager is off or tied up in meetings. You may also realise that your boss confides in you and asks you to review work that they do before they circulate it to their management.


  • You have a USP

You have a certain skill set which is a unique selling point. It might be for example that you know how to work a certain business system that nobody else can, or maybe you have some expert knowledge gained from undertaking a professional qualification.


In Summary


Have you read any of those six points and thought they apply to you in your role? In reality real superstars are typically ticking a few of those boxes. You may be wondering why you should care if you are an elite employee or not. The answer is twofold – first of all it is encouraging and self-fulfilling for most people to know they are doing really well at work. Secondly, if you realise you are pretty indispensable, it can give you more collateral to push for pay rises, secondments, a promotion, and so on.


If you’re a work superstar and are looking for your next challenge in Facilities Management then get in touch and see how we can help you.


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