Underappreciated at work? These 5 suggestions can help.

Mark Freire

19th February 2018

Do you feel like no one is listening to your ideas? Are you being passed over for promotion, or not being trusted with high-visibility projects?

Many companies are ineffective at realising the potential of all their employees. In many cases it is nothing personal, but managers and leaders can be slow to award trust or have a tendency to pick favourites who they consistently rely on to deliver.

However, it is not always down to managers. In many cases individuals can do more to promote their skills, get rewards for a job well done, and open themselves up to more responsibility.

So here are our top 5 pointers for making sure you don’t stay underappreciated in the office.

1. Make sure everyone knows your skills

Your manager probably read your CV only once. The rest of the team never did. They are therefore probably unaware of all your skills and previous experience – especially if you don’t remind them.

When in meetings and discussions, make sure you donate to the conversation around your areas of knowledge. If appropriate drop in ideas which relate to your previous work such as “When I worked at this company, we solved a similar problem by . . .” Although you have to be careful not to be boastful, reminding those around you that you are a subject matter expert will mean they more likely to tap into that expertise in the future.

2. Talk directly to your manager

The ball is in your court. No one other than you will know that you feel undervalued so it is time to come clean. Book a meeting with your manager and tell them how you are feeling. Bring in some examples of where you think you have added value, and where you could be doing more. If you are a member of a larger team it is very possible that your manager is simply unaware of your contribution, or even that other team members are taking credit for your hard work.

Giving your manager the opportunity to make amends and provide more support is a vital step.

3. Give yourself more appreciation

How many of us finish a great job or project, and then simply move on to the next thing? Taking a quick timeout to acknowledge a job well done is a crucial step to building confidence and getting appreciation. After all, if you don’t even reward yourself then how can you expect others to reward you? A little self-love is proven to build confidence and reduce the dependence on reinforcement from others.

If you are part of a successful project, then suggesting a small team celebration (including your manager) is a great opportunity for everyone to be valued for their contribution including yourself.

4. Show others more appreciation

It’s a little like Karma . . . what goes around comes around. And it’s the same with showing people appreciation at work. Start to acknowledge the work other people do inside your team or around the wider office, and others will start to pay attention to the great things you do. Not only that, but you will start to build stronger relationships around the office and increase the chances of being asked to join upcoming initiatives.

5. Know when it is time to move on

If you have tried everything and are still being side-lined then it may be time to move on. It is never fun to feel the odd one out and working for a company which doesn’t promote and reward on merit will always be frustrating.

Not only that, but not exercising your full set of skills or having the opportunity to expand your role will only harm your CV and your confidence in the long term.

But before you do anything, try to build a clear idea of the role which will suit you and type of company you would like to work for. If you want to avoid the same problem of under appreciation, then think about how to spot the signs of an unsupportive company so you can identify it during the recruitment process and ask the right questions at interview.

If you are working in tech or development, you can find out more about our current opportunities by viewing our job pages, or calling one of our consultants for friendly advice on 020 7426 9835.