Does it feel like ground-hog day for you, again? Wanting more but only inching forward on the career ladder (if at all). It’s time to shake things up and take matters into your own hands. Let’s whip off that Hogwarts invisibility cloak and start getting seen by the people that matter.
It’s no longer enough to deliver results.
Everyone is competing to achieve bigger and better results every day. There is always someone willing to work 18 hours to your 16 hours or say ‘yes’ when saying ‘no’ is the only answer that makes sense. To claw your way out of the heaving masses you have to create opportunities that allow key influences and decision makers to 1) know you exist and 2) highlight your expertise.
Stop spending all your time doing the doing.
Your brilliant results haven’t delivered the much anticipated, yet never materializing promotion, so let’s do something different to get a different result:
Build a hit list.
Who are the key decision makers or influence’s that you want to get in front of? Who do you know that could introduce you? What events do they attend? What shared activities do you have? Find something, anything that connects the two of you (LinkedIn is super useful for ‘research’) and reach out for a 15-minute coffee to ‘pick their expert brain’ or ‘bounce an idea that could be of interest to them’.
Have a voice.
Speak up in meetings, be the MC for a company event or find a cause to champion within the business. You could also write an article for your internal newsletter, be on a panel for a hot topic or comment on your company’s LinkedIn posts.
Shape your credibility.
Own your expertise and become the ‘go to’ person. Offer to speak at company and industry events, write articles for LinkedIn and the company communications, find ways to leverage your expertise across the business and deliver extra value-add, ask for projects with greater scope, especially high-visibility ones.
Be a connector.
Use your network to connect people internally, externally, globally. Highlight your resourcefulness and usefulness and solve people’s problems by bringing people together.
Put your hand up.
Get involved in projects or events that go beyond your business unit or attend meetings on behalf of the team. Meet new people, showcase your skills. Seek out cool secondments, joint task force projects, companywide fundraising events, or promotional videos for the business.
Reverse mentor (share your generational skill sets to someone influential), offer your skills to solve a problem for a decision maker or get involved in think-tanks with senior leaders. Another option is to find a mentor in the business or industry, which is heavily networked, and you can always be the advocate of other people/teams’ achievements.
Send a handwritten thank you card or congratulations card. Go right out there and do a video blog instead of a written communication update or step up and introduce a new annual event that has a significant social impact. A quick way to stand out is to walk your floor every morning and say hello or deliver constructive feedback instead of being a ‘yes person’.
Opt-in for development courses, leadership programs, workshop days and pilot programs. These platforms will give you access to a broader network and highlight your commitment to development and best practice.
There are so many things that are in your control to build visibility and increase your chance to be considered for relevant opportunities and promotions. No one owes you anything, and let’s be real, fortune favours the brave and proactive in today’s business world.