How to Get Your Promotion — Practical Strategies Explained

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Every one of us wants growth in life and the growth covers financial status, elevation in our social status and also elevation in our position and power inside the organization we work for. Promotion and rise in the corporate ladder are essential for every one who wants to feel proud of his worth.

Promotions do not easily come on their own. You have to develop strategies to get yourself promoted ahead of competing colleagues.

Here are some good strategies for getting yourself promoted are explained.

1) Show decisiveness

If you are the type of person who runs up to your boss to take instructions for anything and everything, even where you should have used your own sense of judgment, you are not the right candidate for promotion. This attitude may please many bosses, as it gives them a false sense of pride. But no indecisive person is ever fit for a promotion. Are you confronted with a problem and is the solution to it is beyond your power of action? Under such circumstances, if you approach your boss with the problem as well as a suggested solution of yours, you could be a potential candidate for promotion.

2) Demonstrate your capacity and willingness to take-up responsibility

A promotion means moving to a higher position involving more responsibilities. A person who “works” but is unwilling to take responsibility for its quality and output but expects someone else – a colleague or a boss – to take the blame if something goes wrong, will not be considered to be fit for a promotion. Take the initiative. Show that you will be responsible for what you produce and take the blame if you flounder. That is the spirit of a person deserving promotion.

3) Develop good interpersonal skills along with specific job skills

Higher responsibility by way of promotion mostly involves managing more people under your responsibility. Some persons may be quite excellent in efficiently carrying out their work, but not too good in mingling with or in handling people. Interpersonal skills are very important than technical skills in higher levels of management.

Sometimes, highly technically competent people develop excessive affinity towards and pride about their specific expertise. That affinity by itself may jeopardize their growth prospects. A highly skilled design Engineer should over the period of time grow into a Design Manager, who rather than creating designs himself, motivates and develops creative design skills in his sub-ordinates.

Thus becoming a “general practitioner” from a “specialist” might become a good strategy to get promoted.

4) over-stretch yourself in times of need

Are you a service engineer and do you willingly put extra working hours at the customer’s site to make a critical machine run at a crucial juncture, without expecting any special consideration or compensation for it? Does your boss know that you are always dependable to run that extra mile, when the situation demands it? Then you are a potential candidate for promotion.

5) Show loyalty to the organization

This trait is gradually diminishing in the present day culture of job-hopping. However, if you demonstrate your identification with the goals and values of the organization, if you do not act as a parasite to stealthily enjoy the perks and privileges from the organization by some devious means, then you will be considered for promotion. As person with a long standing experience of working in the organization, you will have the core values of the organization better imbibed in your blood than someone joined relatively recently.

Thus, sticking to one organization and serving them efficiently with loyalty is another strategy (which is contrary to the strategy of job-hopping) for good growth in an organization.

6) Improve your qualifications

There are organizations which lay stress on certain minimum educational qualifications for consideration to certain higher managerial positions. By joining part time courses and improving your qualifications will help you to grow to higher positions. By not missing to attend any in-house training programs and by demonstrating your competence in such programs, you can look for promotional opportunities.

7) Diversify

Grabbing an opportunity to horizontally move in an organization (for example, a Maintenance Manager, opting to take up the role of a Production Manager which in reality may not be a promotion) will help you get acquainted with newer skills and pave way for future promotions on a faster lane.

8) Do not develop frictional relationship with the boss

Whether you like your boss or not, give him due respect to his position and do not rub him at the wrong side. At the same time, improve your capabilities to fit into his shoes if and when the opportune moment arrives.

9) Improve your visibility

By your active and energetic participation in corporate meetings, sales conferences, product promotional campaigns etc., make yourself visible to the higher echelons of management. Sometimes, many bosses have the tendency to “hide” their smart sub-ordinates in order to take all the credits for themselves. This sort of exposure to higher managerial level will be quite helpful in countering your boss’s maneuvers in thwarting your growth in the organization.

10) Tread organizational politics with caution

You should develop excellent diplomatic skills to stay clean and clear of any murky politics and groupism inside the organization. Power centers may keep changing from time to time. Being identified with one “group” may work out advantageous at one time and it may backfire at some other time. Non-identification with any group may always be a safer strategy for promotions in the long run.

11) Become invaluable

Higher management should know your “true value” to the organization, which is possible only when your contribution to the organization is far ahead of your pay and perks you receive. If you are perceived to be a coveted candidate available for a grab by competitors, your value increases multifold. This way, a job offer from a competitor or from another prestigious organization can become a powerful tool for negotiating and getting a promotion within your organization. But remember that this is a potential tool that has the power to backfire too!


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