Whether you are new in a job or have been in your role for years, you should always strive to be a better employee. Why? Truthfully, when you are at your best, you are more of an asset to your company. Additionally, you are more likely to get that promotion or raise you may be seeking.

So, how can you be a better employee? Here are 7 practical ways to be a smarter employee:

1. Avoid social media.

This is two-fold; first, limit your social media engagement during the work day (I know how hard this can be). The more you are on social media the less you are focused on your work.

Second, please don’t post negative things about your job on social media! This is a huge mistake and can get you in quite a bit of trouble with your supervisor or human resources (or both). Think twice before you post, especially if strong emotions are involved.

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2. Be wary of multitasking.

Even if you think you are a pro at multitasking, limit it. Our brains can only really focus on one thing at a time. When you multitask, you are actually just task switching (going back and forth from one thing to another), so one thing isn’t going to be done very well.

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When you try to do one thing at a time and you are more likely to do your best on that one thing. My dad told me growing up “do something once well instead of doing it twice.” That advice is quite applicable to the workplace.

3. Stop procrastinating.

I know this can be challenging, but try to limit your procrastination. Aim to be as productive as you can doing the work day and try not to put things off unless you have to. This is especially true for things you are not interested in or exciting about doing. Get the big or dreaded tasks done first so you won’t be too tired to do them later.

More reading: How To Kick Procrastination to the Curb

4. Learn and read as much as you can.

The more you know, the better you can be. Read about your industry and how to be better at the things you do. Whether you are in a leadership role or not, read about leadership.

Learning makes you better for both yourself and your employer. Here are 4 Ways to Keep Learning After Graduation.

5. Stay positive.

Don’t get caught up in negativity at work or office politics. Focus on what you need to be doing and being a great employee.

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I know it is easy to gossip with your coworkers or let frustrating co-workers get to you, but I have learned more than once that it really is best to stay above all of that.

6. Work really hard.

Just work hard all the time. Do your best in your job. Your supervisor will notice it and respect it. This will without a doubt make you a better employee.

7. Take time for yourself

I don’t know about you, but when I am rested, I work smarter and my outcomes are better. Take some time for you and what makes you happy. Say no when you feel like you are doing too much. Do things that you enjoy. And make sure you get enough sleep!

Ariana Huffington, co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of Huffington Post, talks a lot about sleeping. There is a reason why we need so much of it, so make incorporating sleep into your life a priority.

It is easy when we are young (and particularly when we are young and single) to feel like we have to work non-stop and we can’t take any time for ourselves, but you are your family and you need to make sure that your life is full and isn’t always about work.

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Even if you aren’t interested in a promotion or more money, you should always strive to be a better employee. It will make you more valuable to your company and will allow you to stay in your company as long as you want to. Try some of the tips above and let us know how it goes!

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