Following Orders

Some people like to go above and beyond in their jobs.

They have ideas for how to make a task easier or more efficient, and they want the office to acknowledge and benefit from their hard work. These people can be a great asset to their companies. But there are times going above and beyond just gets in the way of what your boss needs you to do.

Here are tips for making sure your boss is pleased with the results of your work:

Follow directions

If your boss asks for you to do a task in a specific way, do it that way. You might think alphabetizing files rather than dividing them up by subject makes more sense, but if your boss is creating a computer database for the files and hasn't told you, your alphabetizing would be useless.

If you think you have a better idea, suggest it

You might have some great ideas your boss would love to hear. Mention them. Your boss will either give you the go ahead or most likely have a good reason why not, in which case you've saved yourself the time and trouble of having to do your work over again "the right way."

The other upside to telling your boss about your ideas for improving a task — rather than just doing it — is that it draws more attention to what an asset you are. And it's a good idea to show your company how great you are on a regular basis.

Carissa Doshi is a business writer and the president of Gen Y Media Group. She gives career advice and blogs about her experiences on You can also follow @CarissaDoshi on Twitter.

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