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How To Be More Confident at Work

Work can be tough, especially when you don’t have any self confidence. When dealing with certain situations, some people may find it difficult to handle and tackle head on. Suzanne and Conrad Potts offer lots of confidence-building tips in their book How to be Confident at Work, as well as providing tips to boost your self esteem. It is a skill to gain confidence, especially when you are constantly competing and wanting to impress and do well. Follow these 10 self-confidence tips and you’ll soon be aiming for that promotion!

1) Be more assertive
Try to be honest, open and direct, and show that you understand what is being asked of you. If you’ve been asked to take on another colleague’s work, for example; find a way where both parties are happy, rather than complaining or becoming aggressive, or taking all the work on despite your heavy workload and then crumbling under the pressure.

2) Check your body language
When you communicate with others, it not what you say, but how you say it. You don’t just communicate with words, but also with your emotions and subsequently, your body language. Always maintain eye contact, and remain cool, calm and collected. Stand tall, with a strong stance and posture.

3) Think about your future
If you can look to the future, you will significantly increase your chances of success. The more you have a clear representation of the future, the more enticing and compelling it will be for you to succeed.

4) Talk to yourself
Most of your days are spent talking to yourself inside your head. Your inner thoughts play a significant part in how you feel, and in turn how you act. Adopt a can-do approach and think positive thoughts.

5) List your beliefs
Beliefs shape our behaviour and act as a guide. Some can restrict and limit growth, and keep you fearful and insecure, whilst others can grow, expand your horizons and build your confidence. Identify which beliefs are dragging you down and which ones you should focus on changing.

6) Work towards a win:win outcome
In order to make sure both parties are happy and comfortable with whatever is being asked of them, firstly you need to believe this is possible. Understand your own needs, but be open to a range of options and negotiations.

7) Say no
This is a lot easier said than done, but adopt the “no sandwich” style and you’ll feel a lot more comfortable: i)  When asked to do something, acknowledge with the request by reflecting what it is you believe you’re being asked. For example: “I can see you’re disappointed over the promotion and you think it’s unfair you’ve been overlooked because I’ve given the position to John.”
ii)  Say no and give the real reason. For example: “I wont be recommending you for promotion yet because I think John is more deserving, as he has reached the standard of performance I was looking for.”
iii)  Say what you are prepared to do and offer a win:win situation. For example: “I value the hard work that you do and am more than happy to talk again in the future to see how we can further your career.”

8) Speak up
When proposing ideas, speak clearly and concisely. Put forward these ideas as a question. This makes it more appealing and less likely to be resisted. Let others know what you agree with and what ideas of theirs you support. This creates a win:win atmosphere.

9) Focus on you
Do your best to stay on-task and focused, despite office politics, rumours and other non-productive situations that are flying around. Concentrating on yourself will help emphasise your best efforts, impress your bosses and in turn garner deserved recognition and praise, helping you feel good about yourself and the skills that you have.

10) Identify your strengths
Write a list of all the things you can do well in your job and all the things you can’t. Once you have worked out what skills you’re good at, ensure that you utilize them everyday. Lead with your strengths, so you’re engaged, energized and self-assured.

Read up on other practical solutions for the everyday challenges of working life in: How to be Confident and Assertive at Work: Practical tools and techniques that you can put into use immediately (Robinson) by Suzanne and Conrad Potts.