The top 50 signs of success at work revealed

Flying first class on business trips, never having to contribute to the tea round, and having your name on the office door are among the signs of success in the workplace, it has emerged.

A poll of 2,000 office workers found one in four also believe being asked about important business decisions means you’ve made it along with choosing when to work from home, someone else buying your lunch for you, and having a key to the office.

Other signs you’re doing well in your career include approving your own expenses, being the person the boss confides in, or no-one raising an eyebrow if you arrive to work a little late each day.

Your own car parking space, a healthy work-life balance and getting 35 days of annual leave a year are also signs of success.

And having someone on hand to screen your calls, a generous bonus, and having an executive-style chair also featured in the top 50.

Geoffrey Dennis, chief executive of animal charity SPANA, which provides free veterinary treatment to working animals in developing countries, said: “It seems many people believe that climbing the career ladder will lead to a world of perks – and some are desperate to be seen as having ‘made it.’

“But while some people clearly get to enjoy luxuries and other advantages in the workplace, like corporate hospitality, it’s a very different story for working animals overseas.

“These animals undertake gruelling work, carrying backbreaking loads in terrible conditions – a world away from promotions, bonuses and other benefits.”

The study found one in five people in Britain believe having a say in hiring and firing decisions is a sign you’re on the up at your workplace, while 20 per cent think having your own personal secretary or assistant means you’re doing well.

And the average worker believes a salary of £78,431 is a sign you have achieved the ultimate career success.

On average, workers currently get 25 days of annual leave a year, excluding bank holidays – but would consider themselves at the top of their profession if they could have nine more.

Success would also see them managing a team of 15 people, and going on two company golf or leisure days each month.

They would be able to put a whopping £583 a month on expenses and go on six business trips abroad each year.

And for six days of every month they’d be able to work ‘flexibly’, working from home or from a coffee shop or external site.

A fifth believe a healthy pension pot is a key sign you’re successful in the workplace, while others say material possessions such as a company car and new IT equipment are all indicative of a job well done.

It also emerged four in 10 believe you need to be your own boss to have achieved ultimate career success.

But on average, Brits hope to have reached the top of their game at the ripe old age of 41.

Geoffrey Dennis of SPANA added: “There’s nothing wrong with striving to achieve success at work and it’s always good to have something to aim for.

“However, when it comes to landing bonuses and ‘work perks’, it’s important to keep perspective.

“Even if people here aren’t in their dream jobs, most employees have reasonable working conditions, are content in their roles and have job security – unlike working animals in the world’s poorest countries.

“These working horses, donkeys, camels and other animals often lead short, painful lives and their welfare is neglected.

“SPANA is working to ensure that working animals have access to vital veterinary care when they are sick or injured, as well as educating owners about how to best care for their animals, which they depend on so greatly.”


1. People ask for your opinion on important decisions
2. You have your own office
3. A good work-life balance
4. You can take 35 or more days annual leave a year
5. An excellent pension
6. People ask your advice on a daily basis
7. You have influence over hiring and firing decisions
8. You have your own personal PA / secretary
9. You’re invited to management / board meetings
10. You can choose when you work from home
11. Flexible working hours
12. You manage a team of more than 10 people
13. You have a designated parking space
14. You fly business or first class when you travel for work
15. You can be your own boss
16. You can delegate anything you don’t want to do
17. You are invited to join senior management for regular lunches and trips to the pub
18. You are the person the boss confides in daily
19. You have a company car
20. You can quit and still be welcomed back if you want to return
21. You are on a bonus scheme
22. You take international trips for business
23. You have a company credit card
24. You have your name on the door of your office
25. You sign off your own expenses
26. Private healthcare for you and your family members
27. No one questions how you do something or why you did it
28. You have a key to the office
29. You constantly receive thanks for all your efforts
30. There is someone to screen your calls
31. No one raises an eyebrow if you turn up to work a little bit late each day
32. You get taken out to spa days / golf days
33. People ask you questions about things that are nothing to do with you
34. No one expects you to make a tea round
35. You leave work on time every day
36. You can choose your own dress code
37. You always have your hotel paid for on a work night out
38. Having your awards / qualifications framed on your wall
39. You’ve got a large executive-style office chair
40. You’re always first to get new IT equipment
41. You can go out for long boozy lunches, and not return to the office
42. You have your own special work station
43. You need lots of people to help manage your workload when you have time off
44. You have someone to go out and fetch you lunch
45. Having an armchair or sofa in your office
46. You get rewarded with drinks / time off etc if you do well
47. Leisure discounts
48. You’ve been given a nickname by the CEO/head of the company
49. You have a corporate gym membership
50. You don’t have to go into work on your birthday

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