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How to Be the Best Employee

Only the few and the proud make it to the top. Decide if you're the best employee by reviewing the habits and attitudes that lead to success.


  • TIP: Employees with a genuine work ethic and a desire to learn, cooperate, and sacrifice for the team are rare, and companies will try to keep them.
  • Step 1: Confront yourself if your attitude is affecting your productivity. You are an asset, not a liability. Be brutally honest with yourself about where you need improvement, so that no one else has to do it for you.
  • FACT: Studio executive Mike Medavoy started out working in the mail room at Universal Pictures, working up to casting director, agent, and eventually managing Steven Spielberg, Jane Fonda, and others before he got to the top.
  • Step 2: Set goals with a detailed plan to achieve them. Schedule regular meetings with your manager to discuss and monitor your progress.
  • TIP: Don't take risks with the company's money or image, or make decisions beyond your level without permission.
  • Step 3: Learn the job quickly Take initiative so that bosses don't have to always monitor you and tell how to do things. Follow the directions you do receive.
  • Step 4: Practice humility, especially if you're prone to thinking you can dazzle your bosses that by completing tasks out of your purview.
  • Step 5: Find ways to distinguish your work. Bring in new business, get existing clients to spend more, add value to current service, or close sales, and you'll be well-regarded.

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