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Published On: Thu, Aug 13th, 2015

How to obtain a promotion at work

At some point in your career, you will crave to move on to the next level and face the next challenge at work. It is very possible to get ahead in your career by obtaining a promotion with your current employer. With a plan to move up the corporate ladder, there are certain steps you should take.

These few points will guide you:

Start with a self-assessment of your work performance

Before gearing up to request a promotion, take a hard look at every aspect of your work performance, from your work ethic and attitude to perceptions of how your boss, co-workers, and any other major stakeholders – customers, clients, suppliers etc. view you.

Quantify your work accomplishments

One of the hardest tasks for workers and job-seekers alike is quantifying work achievements. Keep a weekly log of your results – whether it is how many products you produced or sold, how many customers you serviced, how many new clients you converted, and so on. Employees who can document their successes and their impact on the organisation tend to get the rewards.

Access your work ethic

Examine how hard you work at your job. This doesn’t mean just showing up on time and not leaving early. Work ethic is about how much effort you put into your job. Typically, the more you like your work and your employer, the stronger your work ethic.

How innovative are you?

You may be very good at your job and that is important, but it is essential you try to push the limits of your work.  In other words, you should consider better ways you can do your job or better ways your department could function and make suggestions to your boss. However, you must be able to draw the line between taking initiative and acting like you know it all.

Get a mentor

One of the smartest moves any worker can make is finding one or more mentors to help guide his/ her career forward. The ideal scenario is having at least one mentor within your organisation and another outside, but within your profession or industry. A mentor is a key member of your network, someone more established in your career/ field who can offer advice, support, and the necessary guide in your field.

Research the next step for you

One of the challenges some people face is not knowing what is the best next step for their career. In fact, many people get promoted to positions outside their passions which eventually result in job burnout and disillusionment. Take proactive steps to decide what is best for you.

Create your own opportunities by suggesting a new position

With all the organisational changes that occur within many employers, it is possible that you discover a strategic gap that needs filling with you being the perfect person to fill it. Consider writing a proposal to the bosses suggesting the new position. Even if the company does not go for the new position, you have shown your initiative, creativity, and value to the firm and these things can only help you the next time you request a promotion.

Acquire new knowledge and skills
It goes without saying that one of the best ways to succeed in getting a promotion is to expand your knowledge and skills sets in areas that are critical to the organization. As technology and other environmental forces change rapidly, you need an ever-increasing skill set not only to perform your job, but to stay marketable.

 

Experts also suggest that employees who want to get ahead should not only keep current with industry news and events, but to also pay attention to trends and events outside their specialty.

Build your network
The more people who know you, know your strengths and abilities, know your value to the organization, and know (at least some of) your ambitions, the more likely your name will be discussed when opportunities arise.

An added benefit of networking is that you will learn much more about the company if you network with people in other areas of the organization. Learn more about networking here.

Ask for more responsibilities
Volunteering to help out other departments or teams — or simply asking for more responsibilities  increases your value within the organization. Asking for more work shows your interest and desire to help your department and company to succeed — as well as putting a spotlight on your value to the organization.

Act professionally at all times
Earn a reputation for being dependable, professional, and cooperative. Act and look the part.

Dress professionally and neatly — even on business casual days.

Ask questions when you aren’t sure how to do something.

Dare to be different — make yourself stand out from the pack.

Keep a positive outlook on things, even when in tough situations.

Don’t whine or complain – or blame others — when things don’t go your way.

Make a name for yourself in your industry through conferences, articles, speeches.

Don’t be a clock-watcher.

Finally, be a problem-solver. Don’t go to your boss with problems. If a difficult situation arises, be sure to come up with at least one solution before seeking your boss’s blessing for dealing with the situation. Problem-solvers get promoted. Complainers who expect the boss to solve all their problems don’t.

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