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5 Things You Can Do to Get Ahead at Work

Peg earned a BA Degree at UTD and a Master's Certificate in Project Mgmt. She managed multi-million dollar telecom projects across the U.S.

San Diego, California, at a business conference for project managers

San Diego, California, at a business conference for project managers

The Bottom Line

Have you ever owned your own business? If you have, you'll understand that every penny spent on salaries, utilities, desks, copiers, fax machines, supplies, and equipment is money out of your pocket. If you have ever owned a retail business, and I have, you will soon discover that everything costs money. From the wages to the bags you'll need to package up purchases, it all comes out of your profit at the end of the day.

If you never owned a business, then wasting those bags isn't much of an issue. Or is it? If you want to get ahead of the others at work who are content to punch in and stand around wasting time and supplies, you'll need to open your eyes to the realities of owning a business. Coming up with ways that will reduce costs in the workplace will set you apart from the others who just don't care. You'll see them wasting paper towels, leaving lights on, tossing out things that can be recycled, and generally oblivious to the bottom line.

Atlanta Concourse Professional Offices

Atlanta Concourse Professional Offices

1. Make a Difference

How can you distinguish yourself? Take a moment to imagine you are the owner of a business. How would you feel about employees on your payroll who spend their day on social networking sites or on personal phone calls when there's work to be done? Would you hire more people like that? Would you give them a raise? Of course not.

Start being the person you wish you could hire for your own business and start thinking of the business where you work as your own.

The Bathtub Philosophy: Water from the faucet is income. Drains and leaks must be plugged.

The Bathtub Philosophy: Water from the faucet is income. Drains and leaks must be plugged.

Income is water coming in from the faucet with profits going down the drain. Expense is the leaks in the tub that need to be plugged to improve profitability.

— Robert Allen

2. Reduce Unnecessary Expense

What could you do right now that would reduce the overhead expense where you work? For a moment, imagine that you'll be writing the check for the electric bill this month and that it's coming out of your paycheck. Would you leave the lights on in the stockroom where no one needs to go into for hours? Consider the water bill. Would you let the water run over in that bucket while you go outside for a break? It may not seem like a lot of money until it's your business.

To get ahead, you need to make it your business.

Working as an administrative assistant while attending college classes at night

Working as an administrative assistant while attending college classes at night

I worked as an executive secretary to a wealthy woman who was the president of three companies. In the previous year, her husband passed away. Following his departure, a couple of employees left the firm since their role in the business was not needed.

Beyond my assigned duties of answering the phone, sorting the bills, preparing invoices, and payroll checks, I called the telephone company and asked about reducing the number of services not used but currently being billed. I discovered a way to cut the cost of the phone service by nearly half.

I presented a report detailing how much money this would save the company. They gave me a bonus of one hundred dollars for taking the initiative. This inspired me to look for more ways to cut the overhead and improve the bottom line. Key: The owner may not notice the things you do to reduce expenses unless you make them aware of your actions to reduce costs.

The Confidence to Make Presentations: Learning new skills through education.

The Confidence to Make Presentations: Learning new skills through education.

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Read More From Toughnickel

3. Educate Yourself

In some organizations, the company is willing to reimburse employees who take college courses, whether they pertain to the industry or just lead to the completion of a college degree. When I worked for a bank years ago, their policy was that for every banking class a worker successfully completed, the employee would get a small weekly raise. One class at a time, I was able to raise my salary by attending class, opening a few books, and reading information on the legal aspects of my job.

"Educate yourself by communicating with those who can teach you the most."

If a tuition reimbursement program is not available, seek out a higher paying job in your organization, and volunteer for cross-training. Offer to learn on your own time if necessary. People who are good at their job are often willing to share their secrets as to how it is done. Ask to become an apprentice to improve your skill level, then offer to fill in during their breaks or vacations. When it comes time for them to retire or they get promoted, guess who will be next in line for that job?

Keeping up with the industry standards

Keeping up with the industry standards

4. Study Your Chosen Industry

If you were to list the last five books you've read that relate to your chosen career, what would they be? How well versed are you on your industry, your job, your company's products, and its customers?

One of the most life-changing moments in my career was during a wait at the airport during a mechanical delay. I pulled out a fiction novel and began reading. One of my coworkers frankly told me, "You'll never get ahead if that's the kind of stuff you read."

You must be willing to study on your own time in order to get ahead.

"Don't be lazy in learning. It doesn't get more simple than that."

— Jim Rohn, America's Foremost Business Philospher

Duties of a project manager include meeting equipment deliveries, managing budgets, hardware installation, software testing and cut over of telecom equipment.

Duties of a project manager include meeting equipment deliveries, managing budgets, hardware installation, software testing and cut over of telecom equipment.

5. Seek Out Opportunities Within Your Company

As a buyer for a huge international corporation, I continued to look at the job openings that were posted for internal applicants. Although I had a B.A. degree and a good-paying job, the only way to move forward in my career was to get more training.

The project manager job sounded exactly like what I wanted to do: conduct meetings, manage installation teams and resources, meet deliveries, order project material, maintain a project budget, and travel the U.S. I learned that to qualify for that job at my company, I would need a Project Management Professional (PMP) credential.

The coursework for this daunting block of information was full of word problems, theory and formulas to memorize. It took effort and hours of study in my own time before I could sit for the two-hour examination. Earning that certification opened the doors that had been closed without the additional training.

The Monthly Meeting: Working in the corporate world requires presentation skills and more

The Monthly Meeting: Working in the corporate world requires presentation skills and more

Organize a Lunch and Learn Program

If you work in an organization where there is a standard lunch hour, here lies an opportunity for growth. Start your own "Lunch and Learn" program. Where I worked, there were several conference rooms that stood vacant during the lunch hour. I would book these conference rooms at least once a week, inviting others to bring a bag lunch and get together with me.

Each week I sent out an email to my coworkers who'd expressed an interest in getting ahead, and we would use this time to watch an educational movie, share a chapter from a book or listen to motivational tapes. These things are free at the library or at some companies, they will purchase material for educational purposes.

Through these meetings, I learned an important fact about other people and commitment. First, there were always those who wanted to come and who showed up regularly. Second, there were always those who said they wanted to attend but never made it.

This brings me to another quote from Mr. Rohn, who said, "Some do and some don't."

What will you do to get ahead?

Review: Five Ways to Make a Difference

  1. Help in controlling expenses by thinking of the business as your own.
  2. Look for ways to reduce unnecessary expenses.
  3. Educate yourself by learning from those in better-paying positions.
  4. Study your chosen industry.
  5. Seek out opportunities within your company and train for them.

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.

© 2012 Peg Cole


Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on June 26, 2015:

Thanks, Akriti Mattu, for the visit and votes.

Akriti Mattu from Shimla, India on June 25, 2015:

Very well said. Voted up :)

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on November 22, 2014:

Hello Aesta1, Glad you stopped by and thanks for sharing your thoughts on business practices and employees. You're right about salaries depending on the success of the business. If the business fails, we're out of a job.

Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on November 22, 2014:

Business owners love employees who think of the business as their own. In a way, it is true that employees own the business as their salaries depend on the business' success. I think there are people who really care about what they do no matter where they are or who they work for and to get people like those is always a joy.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on November 16, 2014:

Hello Mar,

I'm grateful that you found this hub and visited today. It is interesting to note of the things we experience growing older which things stay with us. Sometimes it seems bizarre to me that I recall conversations with fellow workers from years back. I wish I could have retained things like that during my days in college. Hah ha. Also, I wish I knew some of these things when I was much younger and struggling in the corporate world.

Thanks for pointing out one of the points of this article as being important. I've heard so many of my coworkers say, "If they paid me more, I'd work harder." The truth is if you work harder, they usually pay you more. At least that is the hope. If not, then we can apply the knowledge we've gleaned to our next job.

Studying and learning things in my chosen industry turned out to be one of the most lucrative things that I experienced in nearly four decades of working.

Thanks for the votes, the shares and the sweet words along with the hugs. Much love to you, my sista.

Maria Jordan from Jeffersonville PA on November 16, 2014:

Dear Peg,

I missed this comprehensive, practical and most deserving 'hub of the day' but am glad to have happened on it this morning.

No matter what subject you write on, you are truly committed to excellence and this is no exception. Your life experience has served you well and you freely share it with your readers.

"You must be willing to study on your own time in order to get ahead."

I think this may be the most important point that is so often overlooked. We tend to want things served on a platter and forget that research and study is needed by everyone, from those starting out to those with years of experience.

Voted UP and UABI and sharing. Love and hugs, Maria

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on November 02, 2014:

Hi Askformore lm, I'm so grateful for your comment and for your thoughts on self improvement. Thank you for taking time to read this and leave such an uplifting remark.

askformore lm on November 02, 2014:

Thank you for a great hub. It inspires! In particular I agree in the fact that we (ourselves) have the responsibility to further educate ourselves.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on August 26, 2014:

Hi Jtrader. Thanks for the visit and the valuable comments. Implementing the Lunch and Learn would be a great idea to take to a community meeting. I can see where it would be a good place to learn about the upcoming Presidential candidates, each in turn.

jtrader on August 26, 2014:

These are really valuable tips. I like the lunch and Learn idea and that's something that could be implemented at a community level as well.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on July 02, 2014:

Hi EZ Swim Fitness, I like your husband's phrase "run through the tape". What a great visual encouragement. Your comment about being a follower versus someone who takes responsibility for their outcome is quite deep and meaningful. Yes, the extra mile. Great comment. Thanks.

Kelly A Burnett from Southern Wisconsin on July 01, 2014:

Peg Cole17,

What a great motivator you are! Terrific hub! Thank you! Do more than is required. What is the distance between someone who achieves their goals consistently and those who spend their lives and careers merely following? The extra mile.

Gary Ryan Blair

Similarly, my husband always says "run through the tape", it is the very ending that really counts and so many of loose our stamina. Stay focused and keep up the great work!

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on June 26, 2014:

Hello Grand Old Lady, From reading your profile, it looks as though you employed great ideas in your field of endeavor. I'm impressed by the variety of assignments and the extent of your writing background.

Thanks for taking time to drop in here and for leaving such a thoughtful comment.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on June 26, 2014:

Hi Mary615, It sounds like you had a great attitude at work and an admirable work ethic. Sometimes, the employer (or the current manager) fails to recognize this type of behavior. When they do, it's a great feeling to know we are valuable contributors. When they don't, it is hard to take, yet, we retain our integrity. Documenting suggestions for improvement is key to the process. Even so, some employers are unwilling to reward their employees who perform above and beyond the job description.

Thanks for sharing your experience and your admirable values here. And thanks for the votes.

Mary Hyatt from Florida on June 25, 2014:

When I worked as a lab tech in our local hospital, I was a loyal, hardworking employee. I was always looking for improvements that could be made to save the hospital money and time!

This is an excellent Hub for any worker to help them get ahead in their job.

Voted UP, etc.

Mona Sabalones Gonzalez from Philippines on June 25, 2014:

I wish I read this 40 years ago when I was just embarking on my career path. Your suggestions are great, especially the idea of the lunch seminars where employees can gather together and learn. And the advice about treating the business as your own, in this way finding means to save on resources, is very true. Wonderful hub. I'm sharing it in case there are young readers who can benefit from this.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on June 14, 2014:

Au fait, From what I have read in your articles, you have the work ethic that is required to succeed in business. I agree, when we're at work, we need to work. Thanks for the return visit and for the great comments.

C E Clark from North Texas on June 14, 2014:

Came back to check out some of the great ideas you have here for drawing good attention to oneself by superiors and employers. More people should take these suggestions to heart. When a person is on the clock one's time belongs to one's employer, not to themselves. Well deserved HOD.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on June 17, 2013:

Wow, Kathryn. So great of you to share your experience here and I feel certain that you will move far ahead in whatever field of endeavor you choose. It is this kind of attitude that (eventually) gets recognized and hopefully rewarded. Sometimes a career hits a plateau and it seems like we'll never get out of the rut. Something will come along for you.

Thanks also for saying that about HOTD. It's been a long time since this one got any attention but I'm sure glad you dropped in.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on June 17, 2013:

Hi Rose-the-planner. Thanks for dropping in and for the excellent comment and votes. Nice to meet you.

rose-the planner from Toronto, Ontario-Canada on June 17, 2013:

Excellent article with worthwhile tips. Thank you for sharing. (Voted Up) -Rose

Kathryn from Windsor, Connecticut on June 17, 2013:

Peg, what a wonderful article. These are great suggestions, and you are obviously the right woman to hear this from.

Aside from your suggestions, I enjoyed hearing how you moved forward in your own life. That is very inspiring!

Employees that consistently arrive to work late, take extra long breaks, talk too much and use their cellphones at work really bother me. I absolutely hate wasting time, and when I am being paid to work, I work. One thing my former bosses liked about me was that I knew what to do on a nightly basis, and I was never idle. You're right, there are ALWAYS things that can be done.

Some of what you mention reminds me of what my boyfriend would say. He is a professional, and I always enjoy his talks about how to move forward. Unfortunately I feel a little stuck right now, but if I work harder at finding a job with potential, I will be forced out of my rut.

Thank you so much for this advice, and I can completely see why it won HOTD last year. This is one of the better ones, I think.

Voted up and sharing.

Have a fantastic week!

~ Kathryn

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on March 12, 2013:

Hello Au fait. You must have been quite ambitious to run a business in your late teens. It is hardest to have to explain to our peers and those in our own age group things that seem obvious to ourselves. Like you said, if an employee is just there to be a decoration then a manekin would be a better investment than their salary.

I see this often in today's business. Comments made to customers by employees which show their business ethics in a nutshell. The other day I was in Wal-Mart looking at linens and asked the stocking clerk to price an item which had been unpackaged. He told me promptly, "Yeah, those lazy customers won't put it back in the wrappings." It told me everything about his future in the business world.

There is always something that needs to be done in business. You are right about helping others. I like the phrase, "Helping a friend is like helping ourselves."

Arriving at work on time is something I had to learn, too. I used to say, "The traffic was murder." But somehow my boss got there on time. He told me, "Leave the house earlier." It is as simple as that.

Thanks for the great in-depth comment and for sharing your thoughts on this hub.

Much appreciated!


C E Clark from North Texas on March 11, 2013:

Congratulations for getting hub of the day with this hub!

I ran a business for nearly 2 years starting when I was just 19 years old. I had to explain to one of my teen hires that if all she was going to do was to stand around talking to her friends and basically be a decoration, and I would have to do the work myself, then I would save her wages and just do the work myself.

Every place I have worked in since, the rank and file start sitting and watching the clock 5 minutes before quitting time. Here in Texas all but no one ever arrives at work on time. I'm a Yankee and that sort of thing wasn't tolerated the last time I was up north.

The thing about most businesses is that there's always plenty to do. Once you're sure you've got all of your own responsibilities taken care of for the time, you can always find something else to do. Help out a coworker to get caught up, tidy up, there's just always something more that needs doing somewhere.

Great hub, and I hope people take your suggestion of imagining the business is there own, to heart.

Single Shot on November 08, 2012:


Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on November 08, 2012:

Hello Single Shot. Welcome. I'm not sure I get your meaning on the comment but I'm glad for the visit anyway. Hope you get things resolved with your issue and that your efforts here are properly rewarded.

Single Shot on November 08, 2012:

Yeah, I'm not sure when I will get paid for my entry..Hubpages did accept it the last I knew and someone commented that all it seemed I was doing in complaining, I thought it was a rude comment to be honest. Just proves they didn't exactly read the whole thing

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on November 07, 2012:

Hellow Mckbirdbks. It is great to save the company boatloads of money but if no one notices then what? We are forced to draw attention to our actions if no one else does. Surprisingly, a lot of good deeds go unnoticed. Thanks so much for your interesting comments and for taking time to read this. Peg

mckbirdbks from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas on November 07, 2012:

Hey, I stopped by to see your latest. But it is not present yet. This looked like an interesting title. And I see Hubpages also, agreed and gave you an award.

I just thought you had to work hard, save the company boatloads of money and be diligent - boy was I wrong.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on August 30, 2012:

Thank you for stopping by to read this and for the comment, Integrity Yes! Peg

IntegrityYes on August 30, 2012:

That totally rocks, Peggy! I definitely voted up. WHOO!

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on June 25, 2012:

That's great Leadershipskills! Thanks for letting me know you were able to find something useful! Have fun with it.

Nice to meet you here.


leadershipskills on June 25, 2012:

Thanks for the article. I have picked up one idea which I can implement immediately in my workplace : The Lunch and Learn Program. Thanks a million!

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on June 11, 2012:

Hi Friends, Thank you for the nice comment and sorry for the long delay in responding. There was a small issue with the spam filter that is now resolved. Nice to see you here and again, thanks.


hi friends on May 06, 2012:

interesting hub

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on May 03, 2012:

Hello Festersporling1, Daniel, I make lists too, with little boxes to the left of the item where I insert a "V" for victory when I get it done. Then I prioritize those items into Urgent, Important, and Backburner issues. That is usually when something happens to change all my plans! LOL

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on May 03, 2012:

Hi Friend, Thanks for the kind word.

hi friend from India on May 03, 2012:


Daniel Christian from Los Angeles, CA on April 25, 2012:

Really smart tips. The best possible thing I can do is make lists for what I need to do. Even better when I break down my "battle plan" for the day hour by hour.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 22, 2012:

Hello MyWikistep, I read your article about iPhones but I had to delete the comment with the link. Sorry about that. I was recently moderated for having an inappropriate link within a hub so I'm a bit overcautious now. Thanks for sharing your work and I'll be back for another read soon.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 22, 2012:

Hello Moon,

I've been on the outside as a contractor as well and it's tough to break into the inner circle. There is nothing to prevent your forming your own group of non-employees and facilitating your own lunch and learn. There is nothing to teach, just share interesting material you find, taking turns who is responsible for setting up the equipment or room.

Office supplies was a key area of improvement for my former company. We had a lot of reorganizations and departments would combine and spin off, always needing new supplies. We would scavenge through the piles of "trash" left in the hallways after the moves and pull out dozens of binders (at $2-4 each) and stow these away for future requests.

After ordering replacement chairs for years as we grew and shrank, we held a sale of old office chairs one afternoon out of the warehouse. Within three hours we had sold about 200 chairs to employees with cash in hand.

I think you're onto the solution by your suggestion of installing sensor lights. That is thinking outside of the box. You'll want to properly document your suggestion in a formal memo with recommendations for timed phasing in of the new sensors in your implementation plan. Describe in detail the amount of savings you anticipate over a year.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 22, 2012:

Thanks Vechiclereg. Nice to see you again.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 22, 2012:

Thank you Pandula77. I was honored to have this hub chosen! It is nice to see you here today and thanks so much for the positive feedback.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 22, 2012:

Hi Kjrzeek1, That seems to be the case. People have come to expect recognition just for being "special". Hard work pays off if it is smart working. Remember the old phrase "Work smarter, not harder"? Someone has to notice your hard work and they have to care too.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 22, 2012:

Hello am301986, Thank you for dropping in and for reading this. Your comment is much appreciated.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 22, 2012:

Hi Joyette, Congratulations to you for putting it so succinctly, what it takes in essence to move forward in life or in business. It is up to us. Sacrificing a little free time can change the whole financial picture. This is really true. I appreciate your well thought out comment.

MYWIKISTEP on April 22, 2012:

Great article!

Moon Willow Lake on April 21, 2012:

I agree with the lunch 'n learn part. I previously worked for a company that put them on, and all participants needed to do was attend because a presenter was brought in to lead them. The only bummer at a former employer was that they didn't allow contractors to participate (and I was a contractor). They do have somewhere I work now, too, and I'll be looking to attend one now and then once I get settled in to the job.

Otherwise, I would like to add that re-using office supplies, when possible, is always a good idea. I know that when I started my current job, I found a lot of otherwise unused office supplies lying around which meant I only needed to ask for a few items from the supply department rather than a lot of items.

And, I also completely agree with turning off the lights and even your computer monitors, too. I cannot tell you how often I walk past an empty room where I work when I know no-one will be in there any time soon so I am constantly turning lights off. I think I'm going to bring up installing more sensor lights for rooms like that.

Thank-you for the interesting read.

Dr Pandula from Norway on April 21, 2012:

Congratulation PegCole17 for being chosen as the 'hub of the day'! It's a great hub and does give some valuable insight to what needs to be done in order to get ahead of work. Thanks for sharing!

kjrzeek1 from New Jersey, USA on April 21, 2012:

Nice hub, too many people in life expect to get things handed to them. Somewhere in the last 20 years or so we lost the understanding of "Hard Work Pays Off" Thanks for the suggestions.

am301986 from New Delhi on April 20, 2012:

I really appreciate your work. Great suggestion....thanks for sharing... cheers :)

Joyette Helen Fabien from Dominica on April 20, 2012:

Congratulations PegCole17. I endorse the idea that to get ahead in life the onus is upon one to take all possible steps to educate onself. It might mean sacrificing the lunch hour, but you have recommended a fun way to do so. It might mean giving up one's free time, but you have made it sound worthwhile. In short, you have some really useful ideas. Thanks for sharing!

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 20, 2012:

John000, What a great story about your father and his cost savings ideas and certificate collection. It helps the company and it helps the worker in subtle ways, knowing that you played a part in the success of the organization.

As a buyer I was able to negotiate lower cost on recurring purchases through volume discounts and vendor evaluation and careful selection. It always made me feel great even when the boss didn't notice the dollars saved. But when she did, it was even better. Recognition for a job well done is a great part of job satisfaction at work. It is great that you had such a good example in your Dad and his work ethic. Thanks again for sharing your experience and for stopping in. Peg

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 20, 2012:

Thank you Claudedog1234. The formatting was interesting on your hub. I don't think I've seen that before. Good topic.

John R Wilsdon from Superior, Arizona on April 19, 2012:

From the comment response to your article it is obvious that you hit on a subject that a lot of people are in tune with. I salute you for pointing out that the business you work for a pays your salary is "your" business. Helping a company, in general, helps you from the standpoint of enriching an organization you depend on for profitability and advancement. I recall my father who worked for 30 years for an aviation company - he submitted recommendations over and over again to reduce cost in manufacturing equipment. He would get a certificate each time and hung it on his office wall. Once I went in and counted up the dollars the company said he saved them - it was in the many millions of dollars. He didn't have to but looked at his firm as a blessing. I tried to emulate that in my work. Thanks for pointing out these things. Good hub!

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 19, 2012:

Thank you Vechiclereg. You are kind to come back by. Very nice words and thanks again for the votes. Peg

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 19, 2012:

Hi Tiffany, Thanks for the support on the lunch and learn thing. We had access to all the right equipment and used it to our best advantage. You do find out who the shakers are with these lunches.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 19, 2012:

Hi Paul, You know sometimes it is who you know. And that can turn out to be a good thing. As you said, networking skills are key to communicating. It is about opportunity and preparedness; timing is critical. Job skills can be learned, but effective communicators are in great demand and short supply.

Wow. Thirty years working for the government you would understand about overcoming obstacles to career growth. Visibility of key management and their support in favor of your efforts is important.

Thanks for your thoughts, the votes and for sharing. Peg

Tiffany Delite from Wichita, KS on April 19, 2012:

i enjoyed this article...i participated in several lunch an learns at the university that i used to work at. it truly is a great opportunity to build camaraderie while learning something new (or teaching others something new). i voted this article up and useful! blessings...

Paul Richard Kuehn from Udorn City, Thailand on April 18, 2012:

This is an interesting and useful hub about how to get ahead at work. I like your ideas about educating yourself and be willing to cross train. I spent almost 30 years working for the federal government and found that in making the big jump from middle grade to upper grade promotion it was more important knowing the right people than in knowing exactly what you need to know for the job. It always seemed that the smooth talkers with the excellent networking skills were always first in line for promotion. Voted up and am sharing.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 18, 2012:

Hello vechiclereg, Thanks for sharing your ideas on how to achieve success. There is an answer section on this topic that would lend itself to writing about your plan of how to set goals and how to achieve them. Again, nice of you to stop by.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 18, 2012:

Nasake, Thank you for the nice comments and the vote. Your picture is great! All the best to you and yours. Peg

nasake on April 18, 2012:

Very good suggestions, and a very nicely written hub. Voted up and interesting!

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 17, 2012:

Wow Mar, It is mind boggling for sure! Thanks again and see you at the cafe? Love, Peg

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 17, 2012:

Czczcz, True that bosses are happier when we fly the cheap seats and do more with less. Sometimes it is hard to do the right thing when we look around at others who don't. Even filling up the company car at the cheaper gas station, it does make a difference, to you.

Thank you for your insight, work ethic and great comments!


Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 17, 2012:

Hi Nurse Mar my sista,

Thank you from the depths of my heart. To one such as yourself who has faced peril and worse at the workplace, your comment is much appreciated. You would certainly know about the good and the bad. Thanks for the votes my friend. Love back your way,


Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 17, 2012:

Thank you Shihab, I look forward to reading your work as well. Peg

Maria Jordan from Jeffersonville PA on April 17, 2012:

Yo, Sista... I didn't catch last night that this recv'd "Hub of the Day"............!!!!!!!

Congratulations, girlfriend! I had never noticed that accolade before! Proud of you and love you, Maria

CZCZCZ from Oregon on April 16, 2012:

voted up, these are great tips for getting ahead at work. I am a big believer in reducing expenses and continuing to educate yourself to be better. Keeping costs down always made my bosses happy when I was sent on trips and ate at cheap spots versus those that spent big on the companies dime. Even when taking a client to a nice restaurant doesn't always mean you yourself have to indulge and go all out. Enjoyed reading through your tips.

Maria Jordan from Jeffersonville PA on April 16, 2012:

Peggy, Sista,

The comment stream shows what a fabulous piece this is.

I am so impressed with your life experiences, your work ethic and the manner in which you have learned from every situation-- the good and the bad.

Voted UP & UABI-- you are amazing! Love, Maria

Shihab Mahmud from Dhaka on April 16, 2012:

Thank for an interesting hub to read. It is very educational.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 16, 2012:

Hello Pink, It is nice to see you today. Thanks for the visit and great comment. I like the sunglasses!

Sarah Carlsley from Minnesota on April 16, 2012:

Great ideas here! Very clever.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 16, 2012:

Hello Taleb80, All the best to you everyday! Thanks for the comment!

Taleb AlDris on April 16, 2012:

Thanks for all these great tips.

Education is so important.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 15, 2012:

Hello Case1Worker, Thank you for the comment! That was a story in itself; something about a trip to Mexico on motorcycles.

The University campus is a rich place to study any subject that can help learn more about your chosen field or a new one. When I worked at a university as secretary to the Dean of Students, there were tests you could take to improve your skill rating and open up eligibility for higher paying jobs. That was a long time ago.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 15, 2012:

Jainismus, Nice of you to stop in to read and comment. Thank you very much.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 15, 2012:

Hi MartieCoetser, I've seen you on the music group and it's nice to see you here. Thanks for the nice comments and the votes!

CASE1WORKER from UNITED KINGDOM on April 15, 2012:

Great ideas- your boss must have been glad you worked with her when you saved the costs of the phone bill, especially when her head was probably still reeling from the loss of her husband.

I work at a university and there are often lunch time and after work lectures- the wont necessarily get me ahead but they are really interesting

great hub- voted up

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 14, 2012:

Hello Arlene V. Poma, Thank you for taking time to write this thoughtful comment. You know, of course, there are those who will try to hamper enthusiasm and optimism with their careless remarks.

It can help sometimes to build a team of those who are positive minded and help one another overcome any negativity. I appreciate you stopping in and thanks for the congratulations, Arlene. Nice to meet you here. Peg

Mahaveer Sanglikar from Pune, India on April 14, 2012:

Well written, informative and useful Hub.Thank you for sharing the great tips.

Martie Coetser from South Africa on April 14, 2012:

PegCole, these are certainly five things that should move anyone forward.

Voted up and well-explained... :)

Arlene V. Poma on April 13, 2012:

Congratulations on HOTD. I wish there were more people like you in the workplace. Enthusiasm and optimism go a long way. Very few people take the time to help anyone out. They just do their 8 and go home.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 13, 2012:

Hello guest Vibin. Thank you for stopping in.

vibin on April 13, 2012:

thanks for all tips

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 12, 2012:

Thank you, Ruby H Rose. Learning everyday. I saw your profile and it was beautiful.

Maree Michael Martin from Northwest Washington on an Island on April 12, 2012:

Congratulations on the Hub of the Day! Learning, learning, learning, wonderful perspective, thanks.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 12, 2012:

Thank you Eddy. The response has really surprised me. That seems to be the way it turns out when writing on different subjects. It's really hard to predict what people want to read. I'm honored by the number of people who took their time to write a comment here.

I hope you enjoy your day as well. It is a beauty here in Texas.


Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 12, 2012:

Hi Linda Bliss, I would imagine that you already know most of this stuff. Writing it down has helped me to remind myself of these mostly common sense items. Thank you for taking time to write such a nice comment, for the vote and in particular, for sharing the hub. Peg

Eiddwen from Wales on April 12, 2012:

A great hub and thanks for sharing;I should think that the amount of comments alone say how good it is.

Take care Peg and enjoy your day.


Linda Liebrand from San Francisco on April 12, 2012:

Peg - this is a brilliant hub. I particularly liked the idea about organising learn at lunch meetings at work, we could all do with learning more about our industries! Voted up and shared.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 11, 2012:

Perhaps my statistics are skewed by the apathy in places where I have worked and I have worked in a number of different industries. I am always surprised by those who do not care and who blatantly waste company resources. I hope I am wrong about this estimate. I would be happy to find out differently.

David Hunt from Cedar Rapids, Iowa on April 11, 2012:

I have to say, I'm surprised you think 90% of employees don't care. That seems rather high, but maybe the demographics are different in your industry. Good info though.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 11, 2012:

Hey Jay, I appreciate your comment and thank you so much for the congratulations! I am humbled by this response to the article. Peg

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 11, 2012:

Hello Dmop, It's great to hear that there are those who are willing to work in the best interest of the company. As you've mentioned, not all employers are as enlightened to these concepts and will thwart or ridicule your efforts. That can be really disheartening and I'll admit, I've seen my share of those bosses too. When you do find that grateful one who appreciates your extra effort, it makes it really worthwhile.

Thanks for the great comment and the vote and the kind remarks about the award.

Much success,


jaybird22 from New York on April 11, 2012:

Sounds great! Thanks for the tips and congratulations on the HUB of the Day!

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 11, 2012:

Hello Janet,

All great ideas that can inspire additional hubs from so many of us who have shared those experiences. It will take a bit of work to present these things in a positive light. Self defense and appropriate assertiveness are great topics where I imagine you could share some insight as well.

Thanks for the ideas for future articles and for taking time to respond to positively to this hub as well. All the best. Peg

dmop from Cambridge City, IN on April 11, 2012:

This is a great Hub with some real world examples and advice, thanks for putting it out there. I have always been this type of employee, and have found that some employers will reward you for finding ways to lower overhead. Unfortunately, there are those who seem disinterested or even threatened by new innovative ideas from employees. Voted up, useful, and congratulations on the award.

Peg Cole (author) from North Dallas, Texas on April 11, 2012:

Well hello Mattdigiulio and thank you for the WOW! Me too. I'm still amazed.

Janet Hoyle on April 11, 2012:

Thanks, Peggy

I would like to hear some of the horror stories you mentioned, too. Perhaps change the names and locations. Could be very insightful and generate discussion leading to self defense and avoidance or escape, appropriate assertiveness, shared recovery stories, grief, rehabilation, self esteem building techniques...

Yours is a great hub informative, and inspirational. Thanks for sharing your experience and ideas. Jch

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