My First Job – 5 Tips to Excel and Get Promoted

first jobIt’s your very first full-time job out of school, how do you excel is an important question to ask.  Unlike school, where excelling means getting a good grade or GPA, in a job, excelling means building a good work reputation, learning new skills, and getting promoted quickly.  

When it comes to climbing the career ladder, everyone has to start somewhere.  The top of the ladder might look very far away but remember, your present position is just the first step on your way to better things.   Here are 5 tips on how to excel on your first job.  

1.  Do The Best Job You Can

The first step to building a good work reputation and increasing your chances of promotion is to make sure you excel at your current job. Pay attention to the little details. Arrive early, stay late, and don’t be tempted to surf the internet during office hours. Make sure that you look presentable at all times. That might sound like a trivial detail but being well-groomed and keeping a tidy desk gives the impression that you are organised and take pride in your work.

When it comes to your duties, perform them to the very best of your abilities and put all your energy into each task. Make sure you meet your deadlines and be polite and respectful at all times. Don’t refuse a task, even if it means staying later than you want to. Think of the bigger picture – paying your dues is important in any new job but especially your very first job.   You can learn a lot by being humble, flexible, and eager to help.  It will be well worth it once you get that promotion!

2. Communicate

If there’s anything you’re not sure about, don’t be afraid to ask. Asking questions shows that you care about the job you’re doing and want to do it well. It will also help you to build a relationship with your superiors, which is important if you want them to notice your work. You should also aim to cultivate good working relationships with your peers. Doing this proves that you’re capable of working with other people – an essential quality if you want to achieve promotion.

3. Use your Initiative

Asking questions is great, but as you grow into your position, try to show your superiors that you can also stand on your own two feet. For example, if there’s a specific task that’s always performed on a certain day, don’t wait to be prompted by your boss. Just do it! If you have any ideas, don’t be afraid to voice them. Even if they don’t come to anything, they will prove to your superiors that you’re capable of thinking for yourself. Using your initiative is all about demonstrating that your confidence and skills are growing, and that you’re ready to take the next step.

4. Take on More Responsibility

Rather than asking directly for a promotion, ask for more responsibility.   As you get more comfortable performing your assigned work, it’s important to look for opportunities to do more than your job.  This shows that you care about what you can do for your company, and not just what your company can do for you. You will impress your boss far more by taking this approach. You’ll have to be prepared to work harder and longer hours without any extra pay to start with but if you do a good job, the rewards won’t be far behind.

5. Learn New Skills

Sometimes, companies offer their employees the chance to study for additional qualifications in their spare time. If you want to excel and advance, you should definitely take up such an opportunity, or even look for a relevant course on your own initiative. When it comes to promotion, your superiors will look favourably on those who demonstrate a willingness to improve their skills.

Those are our top five tips for excelling at your first job and achieving promotion quickly. I hope you found them useful, and I hope they bring you success. Good luck!

Your comments: What else did you do to excel at your first job?  Share with others in the comment box below

Guest Author: Georgina Stamp worked in the executive search industry and currently works for Marble Hill Partners, who help provide interim management.

This is a Guest post with edits in Italics by Lei Han.  If you would like to submit a guest post to, please follow these guest post guidelines.

One thought on “My First Job – 5 Tips to Excel and Get Promoted

Leave a Reply