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How to build confidence at work

Dr Lynda Shaw provides some tips on building your own confidence, as well as that of your employees.


Tips on building your own confidence

Praise yourself

Have you achieved something particularly difficult or completed a long term project? Don’t forget to take a moment to feel pride in yourself.  Also, let your boss know what you’ve overcome or finished. It’s not about being big-headed, it’s about doing your job, and doing it well.

Accept the fact that you will get knocked

If someone purposefully tries to knock your confidence at work, try to acknowledge that the problem is probably with them rather than you and allow yourself to move on. If the fault was with you then accept you are on a learning curve and next time you will know what to do!

Communicate well

Let your colleagues and your bosses know if you are having problems at work.  If time is the issue then tell them what you can and what you can’t do to manage their expectations. Also, when you’ve finished they may better understand and show they appreciate how much and what you’ve done.

Identify your weaknesses

Then you can boost your own confidence by improving or working on the weaknesses for a small amount of time, it might make that next task easier or allow you to help a colleague when they next ask!

Identify your strengths

This is where most of your time should be spent. When we play to our strengths we feel great, we are efficient and effective. Great for the company as well as our own self-esteem and self-worth.


Tips on building employees' confidence


Praise them regularly.

It may seem obvious but people like to hear how well they’re doing, even if it’s a quick email or quick word, the nod of appreciation may go further than you think.

Train them well.

People feel empowered by having more skills and knowledge and therefore become more confident.  Think how much more confident you are in an interview or a presentation when you are talking about your expert subject.

Communicate effectively

If there is a clear path and goal that people know they are working toward then they are naturally more likely to feel more confident because they know what needs to be done to get to where they need to be.


Once you are sure your people know what is expected of them and they have the tools to do the job, trust them.  Don’t micromanage.  They will thrive on the responsibility.

Give constructive feedback.  

Once the job is done, give constructive feedback.  People want to improve and develop, so they will appreciate your comments if delivered with warmth and respect.

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