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Wunmi Adelusi: Learning How To Stand Out At Work

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Intentionality is required when it comes to getting recognition for your work and standing out among your colleagues. Getting recognised at work is a big deal. Aside from giving you visibility, it gives validation to your competency. Many of us like to be modest and avoid being seen as overly aggressive, but we must know that to stand out, we must be willing to do something different: stepping out of our comfort zones.

So, how can you stand out at work?

Know your Institution 

Seek to know what your institution is doing per time. For some, the last time they read about their workplace was when they were interviewed for the role. The art of constantly seeking to know more about your workplace gives you more passion that ultimately gets you more creative in developing solutions. The depth of your passion determines who and what you attract. There was a meme around a guy who, when asked why he was let go by his former employer, said, “my company relocated, and they did not inform me”. While it is impossible to know everything, especially if the company is a large corporation, you should know more than the public. How knowledgeable are you about where you work?

Consistently Add Value

Only the recognition that comes from the value you bring will last. To be recognised at work, you must be excellent at what you do. While competence is a good start, it is not enough. There must be something you do better than others, leverage on that. The depth of value you bring to the workplace influences how much you get to be recognised. 

Be Ready

A few weeks ago, an executive in my workplace sent for me. I was assigned a task, and afterwards, she asked, “tell me, what are you up to?” I went ahead to mention the personal development programmes I had enrolled for, the speaking engagement I had over the weekend. Then she enquired further to know what I spoke about, why I enrolled for those trainings, and so on. This helped me create a better impression of myself. Weeks after, she nominated me for a major task. It was then I realised I had been interviewed during our last conversation. Should you be asked by an executive at your workplace what you are up to, what will your response be? The lesson here is to be ready for that recognition we want.

Build Healthy Relationships 

Sometimes, we get busy trying to get the executives to notice us that we neglect our colleagues and immediate supervisors. Be sure to build alliances top-bottom within your institution. You never know when those relationships will come in handy. Bear in mind that in building relationships, associate with the people who share your values to reduce the possibility of having conflicts.

In the words of Bukola Adisa, the shortest distance between where you are and where you are going is who you know. You look like those you hang around.


Having proved that you are competent, gaining recognition at work will require standing on the shoulders of those that have gone ahead and having someone to put your name forward behind closed doors. To stand out at work, you need a sponsor. Who is sponsoring you at your workplace? Think about it. 



Featured Image: Pexels

Wunmi is an experienced finance specialist with outstanding academic and professional achievements. She is a mom of two boys. Currently, she works in the Financial Services Industry. Spurred by the desire to inspire young professionals, she started an online community of millennial employees where she shares relevant information aimed at building, empowering, inspiring, supporting and promoting employees to thrive in their careers.


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