Looking to be promoted?
Here are four strategies that have helped our clients get ahead:
1. Focus on the right work. You face constant demands for your time and attention every day. This means you have to be intentional about making sure the “right work” gets done. To get to the heart of this, identify your "Big 3" — the three areas where you should focus to have the biggest impact on the business.
It probably comes as no surprise there's often a gap between what leaders should be doing and what they actually do. To determine if that's true for you, track your schedule for a week or two to see if the way you're spending your time aligns with your Big 3 priorities, and be sure to validate your Big 3 with your manager.
2. Understand your value. The most successful leaders do more than get results. They also know how they get those results. This is something that many leaders overlook. By taking some time to understand how you accomplish what you do, you can more effectively leverage your strengths and repeat your successes. You'll also do a better job of giving others "strategic snapshots" of your performance, which helps them appreciate your value and opens up new opportunities.
3. Thrive without feedback. At one time or another, you will have a boss who fails to give you meaningful feedback. But you can't let that stand in the way of your growth, development and career advancement. Do what you can to open up communication with your boss, clarify expectations and share your results (always tying everything back to your desire to advance business goals).
Sometimes simply sharing a self-assessment with your boss can make it easier for him or her to comment on your performance. If your boss still doesn’t say much, reach out to others you trust to give you candid feedback and seek insights and advice from peers or mentors.
4. Make time to network. When it comes to networking, even high performers frequently miss the mark. They know (in theory, at least) that a strong network helps them achieve results and supports their success, but then they keep their heads down working hard and neglect to invest time to build relationships.
Networking isn't something to squeeze in if you have time (i.e., “nice to have”). It's a vital part of your job. In setting aside just 15 minutes per week to take consistent action, you can make solid headway. In that time, you can send a quick email about an event or article of interest, make an introduction, ask for advice or input, or informally drop by someone’s office. Every little bit helps keep your relationships strong.
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