A recent article by Robyn at Brain Based Biz called 7 Strategies to Clinch that Raise or Promotion gives a number of good tips to increase your chances for a promotion. It’s a good read and I recommend taking a look at the article.The first strategy given was “Get noticed.” I thought it was such a good recommendation that I wrote a comment on Robyn’s site to stress it. I believe for the sake of promotions, humility and modesty are character flaws and those that are naturally humble will be at a disadvantage here.
The following statement will seem obvious to some, but for me it was a revelation. People’s impressions are very important for getting ahead, sometimes more important than the truth itself. I say this because it goes against my nature to forsake the truth. If you’re a hard and productive worker, let the work speak for itself. If you’re a bright and knowledgeable person, your honest answers should reveal that and you shouldn’t have to BS.
The problem is, people sometimes don’t see the truth. They only see what their eyes and ears are exposed to, and whether you like it or not, people will take their observations of the real world and will take it at face value. They could also fill in what they didn’t see by filling the gaps with preconceived ideas and assumptions.
If you want a promotion, you cannot be passive about your actions and hope that they are observed properly. Be up front and make it clear what you are striving towards. If the promotion requires demonstration of specific knowledge, use every opportunity you might see to display this knowledge. Politicians are a great example - you could ask them a trivial question like what is their favorite ice cream, and somehow they will find a way to use that question to talk about their stance is on the immigration policy. Along the same line, if you have accomplishments that are also relevant, find a way to make them be know as well. You are now a salesperson, and the product you’re selling is _______(insert your name here).
I’m not advocating deception. What I’m saying is not to forsake the truth, but to support the truth with additional words and actions regarding your abilities. Be opportunistic to show that you do have the skills set for the promotion. Be mindful of how you present yourself, because perception might not be reality, but for your boss, it might as well be.