This is the final post of a two part series: Previously I shared the importance of becoming a knowledge expert in your chosen field and building your personal brand. This week, I shift my focus to consider the notable advantage to anchoring yourself in a company’s culture and cultivating a sphere of influence within professional interest groups. If you haven’t read the first post, you can read it here.

Be a Team Player – Organizations need strong team members who demonstrate reliability, consistently perform well, and actively participate in strategic discussions. Effective team players communicate constructively and collaborate with other members of the team—peers, subordinates, and superiors—thereby maintaining harmony and cohesion across and within an organization.

Join a Committee – Become a part of the company that extends beyond your job description. Joining a committee or brainstorming session, where you feel you can make a valuable contribution, will allow you to take a forward-thinking, active role and show your initiative. You will also have the opportunity to expand the reach of your professional network.

Serve in Professional Organizations – Join a professional organization or interest group within your area of expertise and actively participate. Seek an office, chair a committee, or put pen to paper and contribute to an industry journal. An employee who is fully engaged and versed in key market issues and trends renders himself/herself a key player when companies seek objective and strategy review.

Volunteer Acts of Service – Serve others in your community. Volunteer with a charity you are passionate about or a cause that lends itself pertinent in the lives of those around you. Dedicated philanthropic efforts lend to the maturity of a well-rounded professional and go a long way in facilitating personal growth as well.

Do Great Work – Strive to consistently deliver work that meets deadlines, maintains accuracy, and rises above the standards of the company. There is no substitution for hard work, and by working harder than the competition, your dedication to fuelling a drive for promotion won’t go unnoticed. The more you can utilize your strengths and attributes in your career, the more successful and fulfilled you will be.

As an executive recruiter in the fields of Accounting and Finance, I’d like to hear what steps you have taken to embark on a career that makes you stand out in a competitive marketplace.