43181036 - business people shaking hands, finishing up a meetingAre you trying for a job promotion? Here are several ways to stand out from the office crowd:

Take initiative. If you’re thinking, “I’m great at my job — I deserve a promotion,” you may be a step behind. Take initiative. When was the last time you challenged a process? When was the last time you asked your co-workers how you can help them excel in their job? Are you doing above and beyond what’s required of you to help your company succeed?

Avoid internal politics. If you know gossip blossoms at noon in the break room, avoid it. Getting involved in office politics in a sure-fire way to keep you low on the totem pole. Your boss is looking for someone who is honest and who can lead people, not bring them down.

Sharpen up. Dress a bit nicer, show up a little earlier (or stop getting to work late) and keep your desk tidy. Strive to be a professional in every sense.

Ask for feedback. The person with the power to give you the promotion is also the person who can tell you how to get it. Ask your supervisor what you need to do to advance.

Deal with discouragement. Remember that there’s often intense competition for the best jobs. Didn’t get the promotion you wanted? Don’t let that discourage you.