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How to be the Office Superhero

It’s Comic Con this week in New York (running from October 10-13). We are all superheroes in our minds (justified or not) and think especially highly of our professional selves. You know how awesome you are, but do others? Here are three best practices that will earn you a superstar reputation in the office.

Be the Office Superhero  (Photo: iStockphoto)

Help everyone – All the time
The quickest way to endear yourself in the office is to be known as someone others can count on for help. Given the chance to intervene in a positive way to resolve an issue faced by a colleague, stakeholder, or partner, the superstar/hero employee will always take it and do it indiscriminately. If you treat all of the people around you in the office (including and especially those underneath you) as a client, with you willing to help, go the extra mile, or do whatever it takes to make a difference, your reputation will follow.

“No” is a four-letter word
Admittedly Debbie Downers have places in an office, but superstar status isn’t one of them. If you want to be the hero, impossible is not part of your vocabulary. There is always a way around a problem and always the opportunity to try. If an attempt is made to accomplish something and it doesn’t pan out, that’s OK, the point is that you tried and didn’t say no. Be the guy or gal who says “Yes! I’ll see what I can do!” and not the Scrooge who’d rather troll, go back to surfing the web, and collect a paycheck week to week.

Make life easy on your boss first and everyone else second
Prioritize your manager’s well-being and that person will take care of you. Handle your boss’ business for him and you will be rewarded in your pocket and in your reputation. Do not think of your boss as an adversary but as an advocate. How can you get him to endorse you is the question you must ask yourself each day. Think about it – if you had an employee who not only did her work but also proactively provided assistance with your work, wouldn’t you consider her to be a superstar? You certainly would! And, if you had any sense of justice, you would at least reward her or give her more opportunities to contribute. Apply this approach and see if that enhances your standing within your team. You’ll be the hero sooner than you think.

Debra Wheatman is a certified writer and career coach who has guided the professional development of thousands of clients globally. She is reachable at

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