13 comments to 6 Tips to Increase Your Visibility at Work Without “Self-Promoting”

  • I’m not one to boast about great ideas. In fact, I’ve made several to an organization over the recent past that’s propelled them in their marketing activities.

    I’ve never said a word.

    This needs to change.

    Joel, thanks for your guest post.

    • Steve, you are absolutely right – this needs to change! It sounds like you’re a key asset in your organization, and others need to know that.

      I understand that it may feel like boasting when you share your contributions and accomplishments with others; however, consider it more along the lines of keeping the rest of your company apprised of the important things going on in your business. Although, on occasion, you may have a co-worker or boss toot your horn for you, the only person you can depend on doing this 100 percent of the time is you!

      Including others in your reporting of your accomplishments, such as those who helped you, can help take the edge off of the ‘boasting’ feel, plus ensure that everyone gets the credit they rightly deserve.

  • Ofra

    I have also found that giving other people ample credit and recognition for their work will cause them to give you credit for yours…

    • Hi Ofra,

      It all starts with building a credit-sharing culture in which you recognize others’ contributions. As you continue to share the credit and appreciate colleagues, you model this kind of behavior for your entire team and encourage them to begin
      sharing credit with each other.

  • Margy

    I loved this post! Very quick and simple..I am at the office today and look forward to trying to implement some of this advice. I recently had my first performance review (after a year of working, on my insistance) and noticed that I feel much better about my progress and day-to-day schedule. Its also nice to hear that small talk is actually important–so often I try to avoid such conversations, and its interesting to think that it could actually increase productivity and morale. Thanks, Aunt Lyn!

    • Margy

      (and thanks Joel, of course!)

    • I think small talk is one of the facets of office communication that often gets overlooked and under-appreciated. In addition to building bonds and fostering relationships among co-workers, it’s always interesting to me how important concerns and suggestions often emerge during ‘small talk.’ Co-workers often feel less threatened in an informal conversational setting and will let their guard down. This is also an excellent time to share your accomplishments and get the recognition you deserve and building your credibility, while also making ties with your co-workers. I’d be interested in hearing how implementing small talk goes for you.

    • Good for you, Margy, for insisting on a performance review! It’s a “best practice” in management, although too often it gets put on the backburner. Hopefully you have set a precedent and others will begin to get feedback as well.

  • Thanks Jesse and Joel. Excellent ideas. Will have to get the book.
    You know I CARE, Jesse. Ha.

    Best of luck, Joel. Thanks again for this sound advice.


  • Joel,

    This is a topic near and dear to my heart – whenever I talk with people about “visibility management” I say, “If they don’t know about you, how can they offer you opportunities?”

    If I may offer another possible reason people are hesitant to be “visible” – to do so means they have to put themselves on the radar, thereby claiming their work. This opens people up to criticism, which many people fear. So, whenever I work with someone on their visibility, I always start with why they might be holding back and work to build their confidence in being public about their contributions.

    • You’ve summed it up nicely, Jennifer! Although it may feel ‘safer’ for someone to fly under the radar, so as to escape criticism, it really is a situation where you’re cutting your nose off to spite your face. While avoiding negative repercussions on any mistakes you may have made, you’re also not getting the recognition you deserve. You’re missing out on advancement opportunities and chances to enhance your credibility in the eyes of your co-workers, since others won’t know about the great work you’ve done. You also miss out on opportunities to grow in your skills, as others are less likely to give you constructive feedback when things are less than perfect.

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