There are few feelings more satisfying than getting selected for a promotion into the upper echelons of your organization.
Making yourself a more attractive candidate for promotion is an art form. The process has a rather courtly feel to it – a touch of classical intrigue.
Here are some helpful tips to take on if you want to climb the ladder of your job and career.
1. Get Qualified for Promotion
Who else is better for a job than somebody actually qualified to do it. Nothing screams’ proactivity’ more than educating yourself.
There are plenty of qualifications available that can help you become a more attractive prospect for promotion within a business. If you have a clear plan for how you want to progress, it might feel obvious what kind, of course, you want to take.
If your plans are a little vaguer – but still ambitious – you can do a great deal worse than applying to study for a master’s in business administration.
Masters courses in business administration are designed to help professionals hone their skills in the fast-moving world of business. Students can specialize in cutting-edge AI research, human resources, engineering management, and all sorts of other concentrations.
You don’t have to completely leave your life behind and move to a university in order to get qualified. If you want to continue working while you get a postgraduate business qualification, you might want to consider taking up a remote course.
You can keep working while you study MBA online, and you’ll still be able to build networks and undertake innovative research.
2. Build A Network
Your network is one of the most important things to foster as a professional. Networks are immensely significant when it comes to your prospects as a senior employee.
Work hard to offer your peers mutual support and help. A good network is one where every member receives the benefits.
Networks are beneficial to an employee looking for promotion for several reasons:
i). Building Contacts
A network is essentially a communicative structure. It allows you to build a trusted group of peers you are comfortable communicating with.
They should be comfortable with expressing their opinions to you too. Doing so can really help give you an idea of the environment you are trying to be promoted into.
ii). Exchanging Information
Information is power, and the exchange of information can help you get ahead. A network of trusted peers can help each other out by swapping useful gossip, news about openings, and ideas about what an organization might need in order to improve.
iii). Making Yourself Stand Out
In order to get promoted, you are first going to have to get noticed. People are far more likely to look for candidates from within their trusted networks. Being a supportive and noticeable member of a network is a great way to get noticed.
iv). Gaining Patronage
Sometimes an ambitious person needs a patron to guide for and vouch for them. The only real way to find a patron is to support them and impress them within a network mutually.
3. Take Charge On A Project
Want to be the boss? Take charge of a project and make it absolutely clear that you have what it takes to make executive decisions. Project leadership is absolutely something that will make you stand out from the crowd when a new role opens up.
Every senior employee has to prove that they can manage a project successfully. Successful project managers know what they want, know when to take risks, know the value of making mistakes, and can follow through with strategy.
4. Become An Understudy
Learning from an experienced professional is the perfect way to develop the skills and connections you need in order to be promoted to the top of your organization.
Many senior figures welcome the opportunity to take on an understudy. This is because the relationship is usually mutually beneficial. They teach you what they know about their role. You take on some of the vast workloads that a senior executive has on their plate. Win-win.
You don’t have to officially apprentice a senior figure in order to learn from them. Offer your help when and where it is needed, and you may soon find yourself entrusted with new responsibilities.
5. Get Extracurricular
Work might be important to you, but it isn’t what entirely defines your suitability for promotion. Bosses will look to other aspects of your life to ascertain whether you are the right person for a new senior role.
Have a think about what your personal interests might mean to an executive looking to hand out a promotion. Do you conduct academic research, sports management, or volunteer as a counselor?
All of these activities can help you bring something new to a work environment. Senior figures won’t be looking to promote an automaton – they want to really know a person before they entrust them with lots of responsibility. Show some different sides to your life other than your skills as an employee.
6. Show Yourself
As we draw closer and closer to the end of mandatory remote working, some interesting synchronicities have become apparent. It has become clear that physical presence positively affects an employee’s chances of promotion quite drastically.
Recent figures released by the Office For National Statistics have indicated that people who are unable or unwilling to turn up to the office have become ‘out of sight and out of mind.’ Office For National Statistics numbers revealed that “Employees who consistently worked mainly at home were less than half as likely to have received a promotion compared with those who consistently worked mainly away from home.”
Bosses are not superhumans: they can only promote what they can perceive. Workers who moved from homeworking to at least partial office working found that their chances of promotion went up.
Workers who spend at least some time in the office are also more likely to be selected for specialist training and education. The more training you have received, the more qualified you will be to lead others or execute projects.
Don’t put yourself in unnecessary danger: going into the office if you are unvaccinated is still far from ideal. If you are lucky enough to have received a dose of the vaccine, however, you should start showing your face again.
Let your presence be felt in a positive way. Be there physically for when the bigwigs start looking for talented people to move up the chain.
7. Help Others Around You
Senior executives looking to see which members of a team are boosting the entire workforce. You have the opportunity to do just that – and make yourself a very attractive candidate for promotion should a role open up.
Be the person that holds your team together, resolves conflicts, and listens to the needs and desires of others. These are all things that senior staff should excel at.
These interpersonal skills are absolutely essential in any member of staff that has to oversee projects or deal with stakeholders. Conflict management is an especially rare and useful ability to have as a senior figure.
People that only look out for themselves when they are chasing a promotion tend to make themselves look bad. Throwing your colleagues under the bus for a more senior role is a bad look. Even if you are promoted, you won’t make a good senior figure if you have a selfish attitude.
Think about the collective as well as the individual, and you will have a much more fulfilling career.
8. Be Clear
You will never get promoted if you are not clear about your desires. Let the movers and shakers within your organization know what you want and be proactive.
Mustering up the courage to actually ask a senior figure for a promotion certainly isn’t the easiest task in the world. Still, if you do your homework, plan your timing and follow up professionally, you’ll be putting yourself front and center.
As well as being essential if you want to get noticed, being clear and assertive can show senior figures that you have the confidence and interpersonal skillset needed to take on highly responsible roles.
An assertion is a necessary skill in management and is also essential when dealing with clients and stakeholders. Senior figures are well aware of this and tend not to promote people who shrink away from asserting themselves.
9. Show Pride
Whatever you do, don’t act like your job is unworthy of you. Take pride in the tasks you currently have to complete. Bosses won’t appreciate you looking past your role because it negatively affects performance.
If you are not in a place where you can take pride in your job, you probably aren’t the right candidate for promotion within the organization. Now might also be a good time to consider whether you actually want a promotion within your place of work.
If you feel like you can’t take pride in your work, you might be working in the wrong place altogether. A bit of self-reflection is necessary before piling up the pressure on yourself in order to get a promotion.
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I am Adeyemi Adetilewa, a media consultant, entrepreneur, husband, and father. Founder and Editor-In-Chief of Ideas Plus Business Magazine, online business resources for entrepreneurs. I help brands share unique and impactful stories through the use of public relations, advertising, and online marketing. My work has been featured on the Huffington Post, Thrive Global, Addicted2Success, Hackernoon, The Good Men Project, and other publications.