An employee promotion is the ascension of a worker to a higher rank. This typically serves as a reward for loyalty and dedication toward an organization.
Rising through the ranks, however, requires more than just saying yes to extra tasks while staying on top of your to-do list. You need to take extra measures to market yourself as a prime candidate for your desired position.
Ready to take your career to the next level? Here are strategies to improve your odds of making your promotion goals a reality:
1. Tell Your Life Goals
Telling your goals to your boss will push you to define them clearly. What’s more, this action opens the door for other people to help make them real.
If your goal, for instance, is to achieve the American dream of homeownership, let your boss know. You could explain that the money you’ll receive from the promotion will help you pay the minimum down payment set by the mortgage lender. Who knows? Your boss might just help you achieve that goal and tell you what’s required to get promoted.
2. Ask for a Promotion Instead of Hoping for It
There’s that possibility that your boss doesn’t devote time to develop your career. Rather than wait for your manager and hope for the best, take the initiative by discussing your chances for a promotion. You could bring this topic up during one of your performance reviews. You could also do this in a one-on-one meeting.
Here are a few tips for strategically bringing up the topic of promotion to your manager:
- Get straight to the point. Say that you’re interested in moving up the ranks and inquire how you could reach that goal.
- Talk about your interest in adding more value to the company.
- During your one-on-one discussions, highlight the fact that you’re focusing on honing your skills in a particular area, so that you could place yourself in a better position for promotion.
3. Pick Up New Skills
Hard work isn’t enough. If you’re gunning for a higher position, you’ll need to make sure that you have the knowledge and skills necessary to thrive in your senior role. Otherwise, you’ll be putting your career in a holding pattern. A survey commissioned by Wyzant revealed that 48 percent are unable to get ahead in their careers due to a lack of certifications and skills training.
If you are unsure about the competencies necessary for promotion, ask your boss. Once you fully understand what’s required, take up continuing education or professional development courses to bulk up your skill set.
Take note, though, that training and development aren’t limited to attending training courses in your company. You can take part in conferences that teach best practices and new techniques. You also have the option to take online courses offered by massive open online course providers.
4. Identify and Solve Problems
Every business has problems and inefficiencies that prevent it from being the best it can be. You can demonstrate your leadership potential and distinguish yourself as an excellent employee by taking the initiative to solve the issues plaguing your organization.
Look around your office for problems that stop the company from reaching its goals, undermine safety in the workplace, generate unnecessary costs and impede productivity. Then, come up with a plan to tackle these areas.
Many businesses hold self-starters in high regard. If you choose to take the initiative in areas where your organization needs improvement, you may have an edge over other aspiring candidates for a promotion.
5. Act Like You’ve Already Been Promoted
Another great way to place yourself in the running for a promotion is to think and act like you’re already at that next level. You could make justifying your promotion easier for your manager when you can show that you’ve got the technical competence, organizational skills and maturity to succeed in a more senior role.
Here’s an example: when you attend the next departmental meeting, raise questions that showcase your ability to perform beyond the scope of your current job. By demonstrating to everyone that you consider the broader implications of new projects or initiatives and think about the bigger picture, your boss will notice what you’re doing and start to look at you in a different light.
6. Be Positive at Work
Stay positive and calm under pressure is one of the most important qualities of a great leader. You can reduce your chances of making mistakes and deliver consistent results when you keep your mind focused and clear at all times. You will also help your colleagues at work be positive, result in an environment that’s conducive for everyone.
Boost your chances of promotion success by following these suggestions. Instead of waiting for that promotion to land on your lap, take action today to improve your odds of getting to where you’d like to be in your career.