If you are working hard and doing everything that you can but have yet to get promoted to that position you covet, there are some things that you can try to increase your chances of getting promoted. Knowing how to get promoted is important if you actually want to move up to the next level.
The first thing that you should understand is that it is not so much about you and what you do as it is about others and how you make them feel. Great leaders are those who others want to be led by and who others want to follow, and promotion comes to those who invoke that feeling in others.
You have to really want to be promoted though. A faker will be exposed sooner or later. If you really don’t want the job or you really don’t want to lead others it will show. You can fool some people, and maybe even those hiring, but you can’t fool your peers and your team for long. Unless you really want to be promoted and accept the responsibility that comes with it, you are short-changing your company by pushing on.
Here are five great things to pay attention to if you are looking for a promotion.
Dress the Part
This is one of the oldest rules in the book but it still holds true. The problem with dress codes today is that in many companies they have become very casual. Many companies even allow jeans or shorts and t-shirts every day. While that is great for the staff in many cases, it won’t help you stand out.
The old rule goes that you should dress one grade level above your own if you want to get promoted. That’s hard if your entire company is casual, but you can still make an impact. Don’t go too big here or you will look foolish. However, if your coworkers are wearing t-shirts and you wear a button down or polo every day you will look more professional than them. Your appearance will impact how others, and your boss, views you, so this simple difference will work in your favor.
Make Others Better
A leader makes people around them better. They also delegate without losing touch and accountability for outcomes. That builds the people who received the opportunity to show their stuff but gave you the opportunity to lead.
A leader should always be building his or her replacement. The best leader is one who can step away from the office without having everything crash to the ground. It is the responsible way to lead and it is what is best for the company. Making others better and preparing a quality second in command will get noticed in time.
What’s more, failure to have a suitable replacement could be what is holding your promotion back. If you are so important in your current role you may be viewed as irreplaceable. That is not good if you wish to move on.
Get involved in something at your company that makes your company special or a great place to work. Many companies have various committees or planning groups that make things work. By participating in these groups you get exposure across the company and will make connections outside of your immediate area.
Not only that, you will have fun at the same time. Don’t do it to add to your résumé. Do it because it is good for your company. The fact that you will know your co-workers better and let them see your work ethic in person is just a bonus.
Do What You Say
A leader does not make promises he doesn’t keep. You shouldn’t either. You want to be known as the most accountable and responsible person around. The next time your leader is looking for someone to fill an important role they will be looking for someone they can count on. You need that to be you.
Failing to do what you say will tell your peers that you cannot be trusted. They will not respect you. Their feedback will work against you when promotion time comes. You want to build a team of supporters all throughout your company. You never know who your next boss will be asking about your current work ethic and performance. Make sure it doesn’t matter who they talk to. Get a good report from everyone.
Ask For It
Believe it or not, one of the main reasons people don’t get a promotion is because they don’t ask for it. You need to ask for it, plain and simple.
Even better than that, you should make it part of your discussions with your current boss. Make it a part of your performance reviews. Let your boss know where you want to go and ask what you need to do to get there. Most people will be happy to help an employee achieve something if that employee is willing to put in the effort.
If you don’t have a performance review on a schedule, make up your own. Ask your peers on a semi-annual basis how you are doing, how you can improve, what you can do better. Don’t just ask though. Actually do something with that feedback. Don’t let your company’s lack of reviews hold you back. You can get the information yourself to become more valuable.
Take The Next Step
These are 5 great ways to work your way to a promotion. Pick one or all of them and get started today. Don't delay, or that next opportunity may go to someone else.