I coach a lot of people into their next role. And whether it’s an internal promotion, an external move or a leap into a completely new career, there are always two journeys we take to get there.
- The journey that says they can do the job.
- The journey that puts them in the running.
Because being able to do the job is not even half the promotion story.
And it’s the other journey that matters most.
So here are a few of the more important features on the checklist of that “other” journey that puts us in the running for promotion.
I have short-, mid- and long-term career goals
Those that win promotion are working according to a plan. Their efforts have direction and purpose. And together, form something greater than the sum of its parts. Set strong, well-formed career goals for the short-, medium- and long-term.
I am well-known, well-liked and well-respected
We don’t win a promotion simply by being friends with the boss. But neither do we win promotion by being anonymous, disliked and/or ill-respected. Guard your reputation closely and work on it daily. There is no room for negativity, playing politics or failing to deliver on promises.
I make material contributions
We all work hard and we all do a good job. What successful people who win promotion have in common is that they link their hard work and good job to bottom- and top-line contributions. Put your own contributions through the “so what?” test. Dig deep and find the relationship between your contribution and the success of the business.
I regularly identify and perform in the showcase moments
Those who get promoted can point to their showcase moments: a selection of stand-out events when their performance and contribution shone through. Our careers are riddled with such moments – if only we can identify, embrace and capitalise on them.
I am an expert on the company and the industry
The promotion-ready are those that demonstrate big picture insight. That ability to couple the day-to-day groundwork with the big picture strategy is much sought after and is a stand-out quality. It’s easy to get head-down busy and lose sight of the big picture. Ask: do I demonstrate big picture insight?
I have a great KPI (Key People of Influence) network
Ask yourself: am I networked-in with the key people of influence? This isn’t the same as saying simply “it’s who you know”. It’s about moving in the right circles, being in touch with opportunities and understanding the decision-making parameters and processes.
I work to continuously improve
Promotion winners are never complacent, nor content to rest on their laurels. They know that success isn’t an entitlement, but something continually earnt. And so they are proactive in their personal development, actively seek-out networking contacts, regularly finesse their goals and continually ask; what else could I be doing?
I am ready to embrace the change
Promotion winners are those that have embraced the next change and have already made the mental shift into a leadership stance. The opposite, fear of change, actively works to keep things the same and has us sabotaging our promotion efforts. Be honest with yourself: do you want this?
I am authentically me
No argument for winning promotion is going to be stronger than that which is driven by authenticity. Promotion winners don’t paper over the cracks or seek to create some disingenuous façade. Rather, they work to bring their personality and authenticity into their promotion-winning profile.
I’ve written before: there are 4 Truths Successful People Know About Winning Promotion.
And key among them is that it’s the other journey that matters.
So focus not only on the technicalities of your role – you and I know you can do the job. Instead, get laser-focused on those promotion-winning strategies.
To help you on your way, download my free promotion-winning worksheet.