There are certainly traits that many companies will look for in managers, no matter where in the organization they’ll serve. Those traits include organization, good communication skills, ability to understand the scope of projects, able to meet deadlines, and being good at delegating and supervising.

But are there skills you can develop as a manager that will help set you apart at your company? Can you cultivate abilities that will help you down the path of your career? Here are some of the places to pay attention to you as you grow professionally.

  1. Never Stop Learning: Whether your strategy is to attend an annual conference, complete an online certificate program, listen to a regular podcast, or reading a best-selling business book, the key to continued growth is to continually look for opportunities to learn. If you make a point to both master your on-the-job skills and add continuing education into your schedule, you’ll be on track to excel. People will especially take notice if you share your knowledge with your team to help them grow, too.
  2. Creativity and Flexibility: Not every job is “creative” as we have come to think of it, and not everyone is a graphic designer or art director. But creativity is still a huge asset to businesses and should be cultivated to help create more opportunity for yourself. If you’re down a team member before an important accounting deadline, can you come up with a creative way to adapt and meet the deadline? Have you thought of any innovative ways that could save your business money or help streamline processes? This kind of thinking helps you stand out in your organization.
  3. Being a Genuine Team Player: People notice when your work isn’t just a checkmark on a list of to-dos, but a part of helping the business be better. Whether it’s sharing credit on an important, successful project or offering to help other teams meet their deadlines, being seen as someone who put the business first will make a huge impact.

Being a manager is hard enough. You don’t have to be super-human to stand out, but you can slowly work on ways to make an impression as part of your career journey, knowing that any small investment of time and effort is building something greater.

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