With women finding the confidence and courage to go after their ideal vision of success, I have always been requested to speak to women in the corporate space to see how they can accelerate their promotional prospects within their organisations.
While senior leadership teams are becoming more strategic about how they attract, develop and promote talent, there is no denying that the corporate environment is as challenging as it is rewarding for those trying to make their mark.
Whether you are an introvert, disrupter, innovator or proactive leader and eager to ascend the professional ladder and make a real difference within your organisation; then you need to be very strategic in developing your promotional route map.
Just as the senior management team is investing in leaders of the future you need to be doing the same thing with your career.
Let us share our seven simple steps to snagging that promotion: -
1. Leave Politics At The Door
Personal integrity is one of the most respectable traits to exhibit. Rising above petty differences will provide you with an air of experience and confidence.
While office politics may be unavoidable, it is best to take an objective stance from the proverbial sidelines whenever possible. Although you may be able to form powerful allies by taking sides, enemies can be just as virulent.
2. Dress For Success
How do you show up? There is much debate about 'executive presence' and gravitas so don’t take your personal presentation for granted. In fact, it has been shown that women who exhibit a professional and tidy wardrobe are more likely to succeed than those who appear unkempt and informal.
While there is nothing wrong with participating in the occasional 'dress-down Friday', keep in mind that visual impressions are powerful tools always at your disposal.
Under estimate your presentation at your peril; particularly in the case of impressing upper management.
Communication encompasses superior speaking and presentation skills, but also the ability to read—and command—a room.
Appearance is not one look, as dress and style codes vary widely across industry, but rather the ability to convey through attire and physical attributes that you have the judgment to know what is both appropriate and distinctive.
In recent research executive presence constitutes 26% of what senior leaders say it takes to get the next promotion.
3. Power Perceived Is Power Achieved
Communication is important and means that your personal brand has never been so critical in one’s success both in and outside the organisation.
Take control of your brand so that you convey and control the message you want people to have about you. In other words, portray yourself as strong, confident and in control.
This will actually produce a number of beneficial results. Firstly, others will look up to you and are more likely to view you in a role of authority. Secondly, exhibiting this trait will imbue a self-confidence which will provide you with the ability to solve even difficult problems.
Ensure that you are perceived as someone with gravitas if you have set your sights on getting promotion.
Gravitas is a mixture of behaviours that convey confidence, inspire trust, and bolster credibility, such as exhibiting moral integrity, emotional intelligence, and calm in a crisis.
4. Remember A Mentor
Don’t hesitate on this action. Get yourself a mentor from the senior level of the organisation to guide and help to steer you in the right direction if you are serious about getting a promotion.
Not only will a mentor instill insight and clarity into your career choices, but he or she will applaud your successes while helping you to discover any weaknesses.
Also, let us never forget that such an individual can be a potent means to champion your talents within the company itself.
5. Show Your Work Ethic
You will be more likely to snag a promotion if management sees that you will continue to exhibit a proactive stance and innate work ethic even in the face of a seemingly insurmountable problem.
This energy can also be quite contagious; others will have a natural tendency to admire your energetic approach.
But having a great work ethic is simply not enough. It would be simple if promotions arise as a result of hard work and diligence; particularly if you are able to supersede challenging tasks.
It’s important that you have a network strategy in place to ensure that you are part of the groups where you will be seen and 'heard' by those with influence to accelerate your promotional opportunities.
Being part of internal and external industry networks cannot be overlooked if you are serious about your progression.
6. Voice Your Opinion
It is important to let others know how you feel. Discuss your future goals and visions with management and any other stakeholders who may have an impact upon your future.
If you feel that you have been slighted in some way, express your opinion. In the same manner, extol your virtues (without bragging) and let management know that you are eager to progress.
Focus on the power of your brand by ensuring you become a thought leader in your specialism.
Start blogging about your area of expertise not only on your own website, but by contributing to others. Try and get speaking engagements and find other platforms to create and maintain a buzz about you!
Such an energy is quite attractive and this action will help to place your name at the top of the list when a promotion does indeed become available.
7. Practice Patience
Rome was not built in a day and in most cases, a promotion will not be obtained overnight. In fact, there are times when management will base their ultimate decision upon who is the most patient but strategic.
As patience mirrors dedication to some extent, such a stance is another attractive quality to exhibit.
So in closing, if you are looking to snag the next promotion it’s important that you increase your personal leadership capacity.
You must strategically improve and manage your skills, experience and talent whilst navigating your way along the pipeline. These seven steps are some of the best ways to kick start your promotion dreams.
Remember that success has just as much to do with attitude as it does with aptitude. By following this belief, your dream position may indeed be closer than you think!
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