All of us want to speed our way up our corporate ladder. However, you wonder why despite your dedication and hard work, you still seem to fail to excel in your chosen field. And since we know your agony, we enlist in here practical career tips that will remind you of your goals and keep you focused as you battle for your much-awaited job, raise or promotion.

“Stand strong in your value. That starts by knowing your value.” —– Julieanne O’Connor

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 Ditch the cliché: The first impression lasts.

HR experts say that someone’s first impression on you is actually made in less than 30 seconds. Although looking good is a must, appearing smart and confident is a whole lot better. Yes, there’s no time to lose but just in case all else fails, and your first impression was NOT stellar, don’t lose hope. The second impression comes its way to fix it all. You have a lifetime to prove them wrong and show off the real you.

 Be kind to the receptionist.

This works well, especially at a job interview. This trick goes for anyone no matter how far up the food chain they are. You may never know who they know and how they can affect your application.

 Your weaknesses are as important as your strengths.

It is a must that you put your weaknesses before you as those that you’re probably unaware of will hurt you the most. Utilize any roadblocks in your career to determine your hidden weaknesses. Though this may be initially hard to face, have the guts to involve other people by asking them to assess you objectively. This, no doubt will help you in the long run.

 Make yourself totally likable.

The number one quality for getting hired is likability. People want to hire other people whom they can comfortably work with.

 Remind yourself that your main goal at work is to learn and contribute.

Success and promotion will follow from there. Assume that everything you do will have an effect on your raise and promotion opportunities.

 Never cease to learn.

Study and work harder in whatever seemingly unrelated areas you are interested in. You’d be surprised how you can make use of them in time. You will eventually reap what you sow.

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 Familiarize the art of asking questions.

Learning how to properly use questions to your advantage is definitely a skill. You can learn, get answers, mentor people and develop your reputation just by using questions. The right questions can surely open more doors for you.

 Never hate Mondays.

Stop complaining about Mondays, most especially saying this overused line from different workers: “I hate my job and do not want to be here.” Remember how true and powerful the law of attraction totally is.

 If you want to shine, let new things happen.

You don’t get ahead by doing your job well—you get ahead by making new things happen that weren’t a part of your job description.In the chaos, there is an opportunity. Most major career accelerations happen when someone steps into a mess and makes a difference.

 Sharing credits can do you good, believe me.

We want to give credit to whom it’s really due. Hence, sometimes, sharing credit for something can do you a favor. You can amazingly build allies and create your own circle of friends who are productive and dedicated – influencing each other.

 After-office hangouts are sometimes really cool.

Do not underestimate the power of social rituals. Always saying no to after-work drinks shouldn’t affect your career, but it probably will.

 Manage your stresses with wit and grace.

You probably know what stress feels like. It’s that constant pressure to succeed, fulfill expectations, or even get by day-to-day when you just have too much to do.

No matter where your stress is coming from, it’s not doing you any good: Constantly pushing your limits can eventually take a serious toll on your physical and mental health.

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 Widen your networks.

These connections can lead you to new opportunities that you wouldn’t otherwise know about. Make sure to stay in touch. Continue to make friends as every person you meet is a potential door to a new opportunity—personally or professionally. Build good bridges even in that just-for-now job, because you never know how they’ll weave into the larger picture of your life. It’s a small world, after all.

Good luck to your ventures, folks!