September 16, 2007

Promotion - Making it Happen

Promotions are an integral part of corporate life. They bolster your confidence, provide you with more responsibility, better compensation and allow you to leverage your capabilities. But sometimes we rely too much on the system for automatic evalaution and subsequent promotion. These few pointers allow you to manage the promotion process and ensure some degree of control over this important event.

Make your boss look good - If your boss looks good, then you look good. If your boss looks good, he likes it and he in turn likes you. The most obvious way to make your boss look good is by getting your job done and as your proficiency increases - start doing your boss's job.

Excel at your job - If you are doing the above, probably some of that is because you are doing your job well. Keep it up. Getting a consistent 'exceeds' will eventually pay off.

It's a team sport - Most of the time it's a team sport. Play a fair game, help others and they will help you. Being mean, deceitful and selfish will catch-up with you.

Toot your horn - Not excessively but let others know how good you are and what a good job you are doing. There is nothing wrong in reminding others (when there is an opportunity) about your accomplishments.

Network - It's not only your boss and your team. Everything around that is also in your scope. Your influence and interaction is limited but there is interaction. Make it positive and engaging. It's a small world and people talk.

Get the facts - What job level are you at? What is the next level? Are there any gaps? How do you demonstrate working at the next level? If it's factual - you have a much stronger case for getting that promotion.

Regilar checkpoints - Meet with your boss every month. Review progress and accomplishments. Making it to the next level should not be an annual endeavor but a consistent, regular and interactive exercise.

Evaluate - If you have given it your best and nothing is working then evaluate. Are you missing something, does the opportunity not exist, is your management not supportive ... There has to be a reason - find it and evaluate it.

Get a second opinion - Have mentors and advisors. Again – focus on periodic and regular feedback. Get some perspective from your advisory team. Understand their point of view. Don't be hasty but sometimes - moving on may be the best choice.

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