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5 Common Mistakes Hurting Your Credibility

Source | | Susie Moore

In my 20s, I used to be scared to speak up in corporate meetings. I was afraid I’d ask a dumb question and look silly. So I held back. A lot. Even though I knew deep down my ideas were good, and that I could be making more of a contribution. But my ego stopped me because I didn’t want to feel vulnerable or exposed.

Does this sound like you? If so, you’re not alone. Self-sabotaging behavior is commonplace at work. But it doesn’t have to be, and even simple awareness of it helps. Here are five common career-crushing culprits to lose at the office.

1. Undersharing: How will people be aware of your smarts and savvy if you are silent? Not sharing your ideas is selfish too. That’s why people are hired in the first place — to be of service and value. If you are not adding value, you are taking up space. So don’t hold back! Better an average idea that falls flat than a genius suggestion that’s never voiced. Don’t be afraid to let your light shine!

2. Over-Apologizing: When you next need some advice, have some feedback, or have a question, don’t say, “Oh I’m sorry to bother you, Tom…” Just ask, “Hey Tom, I have a quick question, do you have a few minutes today?”

Over apologizing is weakening. It makes you feel small and affects how others see you too. You are allowed to ask questions, seek advice, and talk to your co-workers! Just make your requests with kindness and confidence. And if you make a mistake of any kind — share appreciation over an apology, if you can. Instead of saying, “I’m so sorry this report is a few minutes late!” say “Thanks for your patience in receiving this report!” People prefer to be thanked.

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