When you read the title of this blog, you probably thought to yourself, "I should not have to help her appreciate me! I don't even think that office would run without me! And you're probably right; it probably wouldn't. However, appreciation and necessity are seldom the same thing, and you can be entirely integral to office operations without necessarily being appreciated.
Another common response to the idea that you should be helping your employer appreciate you is that if you have to point out what you should be appreciated for, then you don't want the appreciation. While this is a natural and often instinctive response, think carefully. Do you really not care if you are appreciated for your hard work? Would it really not make any difference in your mindset or your enthusiasm if you got the occasional "thanks, great job!" from your employer? If it would not, then by all means, stop reading right now. Most people, however, will find that they benefit from a greater degree of appreciation regardless of its origination.
When you are trying to "help" your boss appreciate you, the best thing to do is make sure that they are aware of the things that you are doing. For example, it may not really have occurred to your employer that it is you who are responsible for keeping their calendar organized, keeping the coffee pot full or coordinating their 8,000 meetings. While you should not start nagging or reminding them directly about how hard you are working, it can be a very useful tool to start recording your efforts. This serves two purposes: the record is practically useful when it comes to annual evaluations, but it also helps make your contributions clearer. I worked for an employer once who saw my lists that I was keeping and actually asked that he receive an email containing such a summary at the beginning of each day. It helped him know what was going on in his own schedule and, at the same time, let him know where my attention was focused!
While appreciation may not rain down on you like a storm the second you start subtly taking measures to increase your employer's awareness of your hard work, you will soon find that your efforts will pay off. Remember to be patient and that ultimately, your own appreciation and pride in a job well done is its own reward!