Getting that Promotion

Josh Hawkins
August 27, 20153 mins read

When you feel like you have reached the top of the ladder you currently inhabit, chances are your boss does not feel like you have. This could be down to the fact that the particular ladder you have your eye on has a current occupier – that’s right, it’s your boss! But there could be more to it than this...

Hitting targets / deadlines and being a consistently high performer are all very relevant, and somewhat of a given, when looking for a promotion but what else is required? 

The answer is often several things but I want to focus on one thing, something you could be over looking, presuming you are currently working for an ambitious manager. It is something you may not have even thought your manager would be thinking – “Does this individual have my back?” 

When ambitious, motivated individuals are looking to climb said ladder; they are constantly looking at who has the potential to strap on the climbing shoes and be an asset on that journey. This notion of “having my back” could come in many forms, including: - 

  • Will this person drive the team / goals of the team if I’m not in the office?
  • What is the wider perception of this individual in the team / business and should I associate myself with them?
  • Could this individual stand by me, put aside personal feelings to drive and deliver something that they do not wholly agree with but understand it is the direction the business has chosen?

These points, and many more, are the daily thoughts of your leaders, as such personal branding and how you position yourself is crucial to accessing opportunities. 

In terms of tackling these bullet points, the first one is obvious – drive the team agenda and targets when your boss is next on holiday or out of the office.  

Perception is something that can be gauged by interacting with management and peers alike to get an understanding of your current ‘brand’ status. This can sometimes not give you the full story as people are obviously not always honest. A great option is to participate in a 360 review, completed by colleagues and management at all levels, which can give a great understanding of where you are currently and areas to focus on. 

Talking to your managers about progression and asking to do assessments, such as a 360, will allow you to build a development plan to improve your weaknesses and enable you to become better; a great indicator for your leaders. 

Finally, taking from the paragraph above, make sure you are telling your manager that you want to progress and be considered for new opportunities. If they have a team of 20+ people trying to be across everyone’s career plan and do their job is a big ask, this is where the good old phrase “If you don’t ask, you don’t get” rings very true! 

Happy Climbing! 

Josh Hawkins's picture
Associate Manager
jhawkins@morganmckinley.com

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