When it comes to elevating your career, self-advocacy is integral for success. When you focus on speaking up for yourself, reaching out when you need help, and becoming an active champion of your own needs, you help shape your career into what you always envisioned. Here is a list of some ways to speak up for yourself on the job:
Know What You Want
Prior to self-advocating, it’s important to consider what you want and why you want it. Do you want to learn something new? Increase or decrease your workload? Spearhead the next big project? Once you know what you want, you’ll be better able to advocate for yourself and prepare for any questions you may be asked. Remember, sometimes self-advocating means carving out the time to attend a training seminar, build your skill set, or work on your presentation skills. Whether your goals are big or small, self-advocacy can help you make them a reality.
If it’s your first time advocating for yourself, then starting with something small can help you build your confidence. Think about some minor things around the office that could be improved, from investing in a new keyboard, to purchasing a new selection of snacks or coffee. By starting with something small, the fear surrounding self-advocacy will dissipate over time and you’ll grow more and more comfortable requesting bigger changes, such as a raise or promotion.
As you plan ahead for that conversation with your boss, remember that for every issue you bring up, you should be ready to share at least two solutions. This will show your boss that you’re determined, prepared, and value the overall success of the business in addition to your own.
Have a Conversation
Once you carefully created a plan, it’s time to speak to your boss about your requests. Be sure to enter the conversation with confidence, keep it positive, and remain respectful. Emphasize the parts of the company that are doing well and then mention some areas of improvement. By keeping the energy light and positive your conversation should remain focused on solutions and not complaints.
Start advocating for yourself today – you’ve got this!