How do you display achievements and awards without coming across as tacky or narcissistic?


Feb 25, 2013 Blog 0 3724 Views

Earning accolades like Harvard PhD’s or an Oscar (yes, we have Oscars on the brain today!) surely makes your mother proud.  But, sometimes, believe it or not, displaying these achievements in your office can have the opposite effect on co-workers.  So, how do we balance displaying the fruits of our labor without becoming the office jerk?

Since your office is a reflection of who you are and what is important to you, it probably should not contain just your Harvard diploma, Oscar trophy, or “Employee of the Year” plaque – unless of course, that is the only thing in life that you value, or you like being the butt of jokes.

To infuse your office with the real you – a person who is kind, friendly, hard-working, humble, (fill in the adjective here), then you can do a few simple things to communicate that you are a high-achiever, but that you are also approachable and likeable.  We are not, however, suggesting cluttering your office with unnecessary “stuff”.

Steps to tastefully display those impressive accolades and awards:

  • Position awards so that they do not stare a visitor in the face when they walk into your office
  • Include tasteful items that are important to you, positioned about your office,
    • perhaps a globe, one picture of your family, a small bronze sculpture of an elephant, or one or two items from a personal collection
  • Make sure that a visitor can find something in your office that shows them that you are a “normal person” – someone that the visitor can relate to

And if all else fails, and you can’t figure out how to display those awards tactfully, you can just wear your award around your neck.  If you are as bad-ass as Chuck Norris, that will be good enough.  Of course, in the unlikely event that you are labeled the “office jerk”, be sure to maintain a toothy smile as you unleash your round-house kick to their head!

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