Professional ambition. A lot of people lack it. But maybe you’ve got it in spades.
You’re not happy to just sit around and stick with your current job for the foreseeable future – you want to advance. Here’s a quick guide to being proactive and grabbing that promotion!
Make sure you’re ready
A lot of people out there seem to like the idea of being promoted. They like that they can tell other people their new job title because it sounds more prestigious.
They definitely like the idea of getting more money! But are you actually ready to be promoted? http://www.idealmagazine.co.uk has an article that can give you a good idea of the sort of challenges you should be expecting when you get promoted to a senior position.
Although before you apply for these positions do remember that there’s a reason the higher-ups in a given office get paid more: they work longer hours and take on a lot of extra responsibility.
Many people seem to think that the high-earners of the business world don’t do as much work as “the people below”, and this might be what causes people to chase promotions without actually being ready to be promoted. Don’t fall for this misconception!
Networking and mentoring
They say that’s it’s not what you know that gets you far in business – it’s who you know. This is usually stated in a very cynical way; it refers to favouritism, a tendency for the business world to leans towards nepotism than being the capitalist meritocracy that it should be.
Well, all of this can be a bit of an overstatement. Yes, who you know is very important. But without a lot of knowledge and a strong work ethic, the chances are high that you’re going to have a hard time getting promoted in your line of work.
It’s important to get to know your boss (and, if you can, your boss’s boss!) You can read more about this over at https://www.thebalance.com.
Anyone in a senior position to you is worth getting to know, though you’ll want to keep the focus on your own department. Working closely with a senior member of staff can help you develop an informal mentor relationship as they reveal the ropes to you.
You can make this more formal if you ask them – even if formal mentoring can’t be arranged, this shows ambition, which will definitely make you stand out!
Speak up and stop being modest
Okay, so you shouldn’t exactly be immodest. But you should certainly be less shy and willing to self-promote. A lot of people don’t like self-promotion that much, but it’s how to move up the career ladder.
https://www.forbes.com has some useful reading about self-promotion in the workplace. Think about it: how did you get onto the career ladder in the first place?
With job applications, resumés, and interviews. These things are exercises in self-promotion. Be aware of your strengths. Don’t be afraid to really sell yourself if a new position opens up.
On the subject of shyness and your need to defeat it, making yourself heard is also essential. If you’re out of sight (or earshot), then you’re out of mind.
If you have ideas, then you need to speak up. Do your best to contribute meaningful, interesting, and relevant points into both work conversations and more casual conversations with colleagues.
This is one of the best ways to ensure that you stay on people’s radars. Speaking up should also include voicing your desire to progress within the company – though be careful not to sound like you’ll be a cutthroat contender!
Hanging in there vs moving on
Getting promoted isn’t exactly a quick process. It can take time to make yourself noticed in such a way that management start to see you as a serious contender for the next rung of the ladder.
After all, they tend to be very busy, which means they may not notice things as quickly as your colleagues. There’s also the fact that you’re basically waiting for a space to open up above you – and who knows how long that can take?
So be patient. The longer you’re with the company and doing great work, the better your chances.
Having said that, you should also consider the possibility of moving up the career ladder within another company. http://www.payscale.com has some good advice for those willing to search for new opportunities while still employed.
While staying on and advancing within a more familiar company is certainly more ideal, the fact is that most people move up career ladders by bouncing from one job to another every few years. If prospects aren’t looking great at your current job, don’t be afraid to take the leap!