Before You Speak Up

I believe you can ignite your professional success when you boldly speak up.  But, no matter how incredible your presentation, product or proposition is, before you can get a seat at the table, your professional reputation has to get you through the door.

No one has to listen to you.  There may be some people who don’t have a choice but to hear you, but to truly listen, that’s their decision.  So whether you want a promotion at work, the chance to get in front of a prospective customer, or maybe you really just want the people around you to value your thoughts, before you speak up, make sure you’ve created a reputation that will earn you a seat at the table.  If you don’t, your bold ‘ask’ will most likely fall on deaf ears.


I’m not all about Taylor Swift, but do you remember her song End Game?

Toward the end of the song she says ‘reputation precedes me’.  She hit the nail on the head with that phrase.  Before you ever get a chance to speak up for yourself, people are already going to have an opinion about you.

Should other people’s opinion of you matter?  Absolutely.

Why?  Their opinion of you matters because it drives how they treat you.


It Didn’t Work

I heard a story recently about an employee who wanted a raise.

If you’ve heard me speak before, then you know I believe you should speak up and ask for what you want to get what you want (I wrote a short blog on that, too: Ask for Opportunity).  

The employee did just that, he spoke up and asked for what he wanted. 

What happened? 

He didn’t get it. 😳


The employee’s supervisor said he was already getting cost of living increases every year, his job responsibilities hadn’t changed and most importantly, he had shown no signs of wanting to take on more responsibility or learning anything new.  In other words, his attitude and commitment level were far from being desirable in the eyes of the decision maker.  So, when the employee asked for a raise, it fell on deaf ears.

You would think if someone was bold enough to ask for a raise then they would have the professional reputation to back that up.  Turns out that’s not always the case.  How do you make sure that’s not you?  Simple.  Create a professional reputation that will blow their minds.


Blow Their Minds

There are a few things that directly affect your professional reputation.  These are things you must be handling correctly at every stage of your career, not just the beginning, not only when you want something, but…24/7, 365.  Doing these things won’t necessarily motivate people to give you what you’re asking for, but these things absolutely will open the door for the possibility.

  1. I don’t want you to just do your job — I want you to find ways to blow people’s mind in the best way possible.  Ask yourself, “How can I apply my skills to take the results to the next level?”   If you have the bandwidth to do more, do it!  Don’t lay back and take it easy.  Find ways to be the most valuable part of the team.
  2. Think deeper.  When you think like no one else, you can have success like no one else.  How do you do that?  It’s simple, you focus on learning constantly.  Read new books, watch new documentaries, listen to new podcasts…anything reputable that is going to stretch your mind.  When you are someone who thinks about things in a more progressive, more profitable, more value driven way, then you become someone who simply cannot be ignored.
  3. The business world it-factor is work ethic.  Work ethic can be defined in many different ways but it all boils down to your attitude.  You don’t have to accept your default feelings to set your attitude.  You can control your attitude and make it work in your favor.  Your work ethic affects not only you, but the people around you too.  If you choose to approach your work, your customers, your coworkers and supervisors all with a positive attitude and determination to drive results, then your work ethic will most likely blow their minds.


Speak Up

Creating a reputation that will earn you opportunity after opportunity is simply done through making a choice.

🤔Knowledge — Will you choose to go deeper?

🤔Skills — Will you choose to learn and commit to applying them in more ways?

🤔Attitude — Will you choose positivity every day?

In every situation you have the choice to do what it takes to get by or do what it takes to thrive.  Create future success by doing things today that will skyrocket your level of opportunity tomorrow.

Need Help Improving Your Leaders & Teams Communication? Let’s Talk About It.

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You might also like this: Leaders Say Yes to Success

Alyson Van Hooser
Author: Alyson Van Hooser
Alyson Van Hooser, Leadership Keynote Speaker, Trainer on Millennials, Gen Z & Women in Business With the grit that only comes from tough experiences, Alyson has learned a thing or two about personal and professional success. From her management experience with Walmart, as an elected city council member, bank manager — all before the age of 30 — Alyson has wisdom well beyond her years! Her podcast, Stake: The Leadership Podcast, offers a fresh perspective on leadership and helps multiple generations successfully work together! Connect with Alyson on LinkedIn and Instagram.

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