Climbing the career ladder can be a downright unfair pursuit. Some people have a knack for picking up promotions and pay rises simply by breathing, while others seem to miss out despite slaving away for hours.
Staying back late, keeping your nose to the grindstone and doing a good job doesn’t necessarily mean you are going to fast track it to the top. You might have incredible skills, but if they’re teamed with a lack of talent for self-promotion you could be invisible when it comes to promotion season. Dedicate some of the working week to distinguishing yourself from the pack, so the boss will not only learn your name but will know how important you are for the company.
Plan your moves wisely to make sure you get noticed for the right reasons. The only thing you are going to become is unpopular if you swan around the office brazenly talking yourself up, park a red Ferrari in the lobby, suck up shamelessly to senior management and take credit for other people’s work.
Do quality work
The first step to getting credit for your work is making sure it’s worth noticing in the first place. It doesn’t matter how much you wave around your latest project if it’s as impressive as a lump of sand. If your work is poor, then you have two options – pick up your game or fly under the radar and hope no-one catches onto your incompetence. Otherwise you’ll be shown the door – and not the one that leads to a private office with water views.
Nothing earns recognition like being the office superhero who flies in and saves the day when corporate disaster looms. Coming to the rescue will keep you in the good books with your colleagues, the boss and the promotion fairy. Doing your own job is expected, but if you can go beyond the call of duty in other areas you won’t be confined either by the four walls of your department or a glass ceiling. Going to industry classes will develop your skills, keep you on top of the latest developments and give you an edge that will catch the boss’s eye.
If your nose is always to the grindstone, the coup you pulled off, the money you made the company or your exceptional accounting finesse might slink by the boss’s attention and find itself a home in the wallpaper. Keep the boss up to date with the projects you are working on, and don’t be afraid to suggest new ideas. Meetings are a great chance to get noticed by the people at the top of the food chain, so speak up and show that you are valuable and enthusiastic.