Are you getting enough acknowledgment for your hard work and commitment? If not, it could be because you are reluctant to take credit. A study in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin suggests the “Imposter Syndrome” might be at play. That’s when high-achieving people don't feel they deserve the success that they have earned and so they divert the credit onto others.
Sure it’s great to be a team player, but a little self-promotion can also be important. A recent article by Cornell psychology professor Peggy Drexler (http://bit.ly/brag3) suggests three ways to highlight your accomplishments: 1) acknowledge your achievements internally; 2) inform your boss directly of exactly what you did even while acknowledging your team; 3) enlist a “co-bragger” to call out your successes while you do the same in return.
We have long pointed out the many benefits of acknowledging co-workers, but failing to acknowledge yourself is needless self-handicapping. Owning your success need not undermine your team, and it isn’t boastful if it’s true.
We want to hear: Are you ever reluctant to point out your own accomplishments—and, if so, why? Have you seen others being successful at self-promotion while still being team players? What might you do to promote yourself going forward? Join the conversation and click "comments" below.
Image Credit: Dan Meineck
11/6/2014 03:35:29 am
This is great! Especially for women.
11/7/2014 04:37:27 am
Thanks for this, Amy. Your experience in this area is unparalleled and we appreciate your sharing this suggestion with our readers. What a great way to humbly "brag" through a narrative of "lessons learned" and "how far I've come." Thanks for being part of our community of practice.
11/12/2014 02:56:33 am
By complete coincidence (eg without my asking for it), this happened to me via the "co-bragger" method. It was nice to be recognized, but the co-bragger sent it to a fairly large distribution list...large enough that it made me nervous. My advice here is if you go down this road, make sure you tell your co-bragger who you'd like to receive the message.
11/13/2014 01:57:33 am
Totally get how a large distribution list acknowledging your accomplishments could have felt over the top even though the intent was likely "spread the word " widely to recognize this great thing. Thanks for the insight, Alex
10/16/2019 11:17:49 am
People need to be very cautious on the question of expressing pride in their own accomplishments. It simply may not be safe to do so. If you work in a performance culture, that praise will come your way unsolicited, from colleagues, team members and leaders. But in a political culture, you can easily be seen as a threat, just by the reality of your ability to consistently produce results. If you work for a true selfless leader, its safe to openly express and take pride in your work, and a leader most likely will have made it a point to do so one on one with you, via hand written note/card of appreciation and especially publicly in recognizing your work. Be cautious in a turbulent and volatile culture where competition and ambition and runs high, and you are seen as a competitor, especially if your work is gaining you a following among your peers and team members who seek you out or mention your name unsolicited in a positive context. To lengthen your career in the organization you are currently working in, know and understand who are working for, their career ambitions within that organization before you express pride in what you’ve accomplished. Sometimes, it’s best to quietly and selflessly make others look good. Be quiet to be heard might be the better advice to heed depending on the culture you work in.
10/23/2019 11:20:59 am
You suggest an interesting caution. Self praise could backfire, depending on the level of competitiveness in the environment, if leaders or coworkers might see such self promotion as a bid for organizational dominance. In such a setting allowing accolades to arise naturally is likely to be a more strategic approach. Thank you for pointing out this important nuance.
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