Although there’s certainly a dark side to the idea of “superstar” employees, that doesn’t stop many managers from considering one of their direct reports to be the quote-on-quote star.
According to research, superstar employees offer demonstrable impact. They’re known, for instance, to enhance their overall team’s productivity by as much as 54% and are responsible for generating as much as 80% of a business’ profits. But they also may be more prone to facing burnout and exhaustion, considering that holding oneself to a high standard and being willing to take on extra responsibilities are often two of the ingredients that confer superstar status.
Wondering if you’re seen as your team’s superstar? If your boss has said any of the following 7 things to you, you might be.
1. “You did a great job with this presentation! Here’s how I think you could make it even better.”
If your manager sees you as the team superstar — and, as an important caveat, they’re a decent manager — they’ll make a point of giving you constructive feedback. That’s because, as a critically important
2. “Can you join for this high-level meeting?”
Inclusion in key meetings is proof positive that your boss sees you as someone others should listen to and learn from.
3. “What do you think of this?”
Asking for input from you is one of the clearest signs your boss has implicit faith in your sense of judgement.
4. “Can you help coworker X on project Y?”
If you’re regularly being asked to serve as a consultant of sorts to other members of your team, your manager may see you as a stand-in for their own involvement. This is a slippery slope, however — while the vote of confidence feels nice, this can also be a recipe for having your plate overfilled.
5. “I’d love for you to take the lead on this.”
Whether it’s preparing a quarterly report or driving a client strategy, if it’s a project you would have ordinarily supported rather than led, your boss is showing their confidence in your leadership and follow through.
6. “This would be a great stretch assignment for you!”
A (good!) manager won’t just be mindful of your superstar strengths when assigning out immediate needs. They’ll also keep in mind projects for you that fall totally outside the scope of your normal workload. After all, they want to keep you engaged — read, around.
7. “Come work for me again.”
If your manager sees you as a superstar, that doesn’t start and end with your current employment arrangement. If you’ve ever been recruited to a new company by someone you used to work for, that’s one of the surest signs out there that you’ve earned a superstar’s reputation.