Besides furthering your professional development and skills, the following strategies provide steps to help you boost your confidence in the workplace:
1. Attend professional development training
Developing the skills you rely on for your job can impact your overall confidence. When you increase your skill level or develop a specific skill further, like learning a new coding language if you work in IT, you can improve the way you perform in your role, and this can have a positive influence on increasing your confidence.
Consider attending professional development training or skills training. For instance, you might take a class or attend a training seminar to learn new project management strategies, or you may read journals or books that can offer the information you need to add to your qualifications.
2. Learn new skills
Similar to developing your current skills, learning entirely new skills or continuing your education can have a lasting impact on your overall confidence. Choosing to exercise your development can help boost your confidence by allowing you to assess your capabilities and motivation to develop your knowledge. When you learn a new skill, you can apply it to your job, and this can help increase your productivity, ability to stay organized and enable you to take on new tasks more confidently.
3. Dress for success
Consider your professional wardrobe and improve your work appearance to match what is required in the office. For instance, you might have a “business casual” dress code, but instead of wearing denim jeans, try a pair of casual slacks.
Dressing to appear more professional and coming into work with a business appearance may help influence the confidence you feel when performing your job and interacting with your peers and superiors. Similarly, avoid dressing casually for important events like conferences, board meetings or other presentations, where formal business attire is usually an expectation.
4. Leave your comfort zone
This confidence-boosting strategy can be tough to apply, but leaving your comfort zone can be one of the most effective ways to gain more confidence in your career. For instance, maybe you have always dreaded giving presentations to the entire sales and marketing team. You could step outside of your comfort zone by volunteering to give the next presentation or co-host with a teammate. If this is the case, you would then prepare your presentation.
You would step outside your comfort zone fully, but focusing on your skills, how you would deliver the presentation and the presentation itself rather than the mistakes you might make or worrying over embarrassment will help you confront that fear and overall boost your work confidence.
Stepping out of your comfort zone can also present opportunities that you might otherwise have missed. For example, moving forward with your presentation might present a new advancement or client acquisition opportunity that you otherwise may have missed if you did not leave your comfort zone to give the presentation.
5. Emulate confident peers
Consider the successful people you know, or find someone who appears confident and self-assured in their job and observe their mannerisms and how they interact with other people. You can incorporate some strategies you observe confident peers applying in their own careers to help you develop your own confidence.
6. Set goals for yourself
Setting short-term and long-term career goals can impact the way you perceive your strengths and success. Consider setting a goal for yourself to develop an overall capability or new skill. Further measure your success by targeting small objectives to help you reach your result. Evaluating every small success in achieving a larger goal can help boost your confidence because you can see where you are applying effective strategies to further your development.
For example, you might set a goal to increase your overall work productivity. You can then set smaller target objectives to help you reach that goal like improving your time management skills or focusing on single tasks rather than multitasking. As you find each success toward your goal of increasing your productivity, you can become more confident in your competence to perform effectively in your job.
Read more: How To Set Development Goals for Work
7. Focus on your strengths
Focusing on your strengths can help you boost your confidence, as it requires you to measure your success and abilities. Often, professionals who focus on perfecting their work can focus too much on small missteps or errors rather than the overall success despite these minor details.
If this is the case, one way to reduce this tendency could be to make a list of your strengths and abilities and a second list of your achievements. You can make a daily habit of reading through them every morning and anytime during the day you need a confidence boost.
8. Learn from your mistakes
Mistakes are usually inevitable when implementing improvement plans and goal-setting strategies. The key is to examine your mistakes and learn from them. It’s difficult to accept failure, but failure can influence how you apply your skills in future trials.
For instance, you might have formatted the code for a data entry software incorrectly, but instead of identifying the mistake and starting from scratch, you might examine where you entered the defect code and evaluate whether your mistake was a careless error or a specific, faulty code. You can then learn from this mistake by applying the information you gathered upon self-reflection to correcting the error.
Read more: How To Learn From Your Mistakes
9. Eliminate negative language
Another influencing factor in building confidence is assessing the way you perceive yourself. If you find you are overly critical of yourself or you entertain self-doubt regularly, you may take steps to change this mindset. You might practice self-affirming techniques such as focusing on all the successes you have had in the past week or journaling what professional skills you admire most about yourself.
Continue to evaluate the positive career improvements you have made and continue to praise yourself when you satisfactorily complete work projects or when you exceed your manager’s expectations.
10. Ask questions
Asking questions and being assertive in your self-learning can work to boost your confidence in your career. Consider making a habit of asking at least one question during team meetings, project planning sessions or conferences to help clarify any information that might otherwise be convoluted to you.
This can show your team members and supervisors that you will take initiative when you feel you might need more direction, and when you do this as part of your work routine, you can increase your feelings of confidence and self-worth through contribution. Likewise, you may have co-workers who are also working to build their confidence, and offering your initiative to speak up and ask questions may help to relieve their anxieties.
Are you looking for a job now?
Tips for implementing confidence-building strategies
As you work toward developing your work confidence, consider the following tips as a guideline to continue on your path of success.
Take your time: Take your time and be patient with your progress and professional development plans. Set your schedule with realistic time frames for meeting your objectives, and you may also consider using a spreadsheet or checklist to track your progress.
Be persistent: Change can take time to make, and you may find you need to adjust your goals to reflect any changes in circumstances. However, remaining consistent in your actions and improvement plans can assure that you keep progressing toward building your confidence.
Keep developing your mindset: Having a growth mindset can be effective in self-reflection and assessment, as it sets a foundation for how you perceive yourself. Accepting challenges, overcoming obstacles and praising your successes can positively influence your confidence in the workplace.
Self-confident people believe they have the qualities, skills and intelligence to be successful—even in the most challenging of situations. Self-assured and positive, they often face their fears and are likely to pursue challenges and goals, no matter how difficult they seem.
Having confidence in the workplace can be crucial to your overall success. Confidence can make you more motivated and ambitious, less anxious and stressed. Unfortunately, however, not everyone's born with self-confidence and must instead learn how to develop this inner strength.
In this article, we outline 10 steps you can take to help you boost your self-confidence and use it in the workplace.