10 Tips to Help You Get Promoted

During a tough economy, many companies and organizations are downsizing which has put a real hold on career advancement or regular promotions. In many cases – the trend lately is to freeze annual raises for leaders across the ranks. So it may be tempting to seek out new outside employment opportunities for future advancement. I have seen this happen a lot with young professionals who value promotion more than being loyal to a new company. Impatience can also be a opportunity for making a career mistake.

Do you want a promotion?

Promotions just don’t happen because you’ve been there long enough to get one. Technology and the global market continue to be game changers for career development. Today’s workplace requires you to take ownership for your own future and development. Some promotions are not always helpful if they are not part of a long range plan or they put your life out of balance.  Sometimes — It is more important to make lateral moves to gain additional skills or experience that will set you up for better advancement in the future.

So, how do you get noticed in a tough economy? These are 10 tips to position yourself for that next promotion.

1. Develop Relationships with Great People. Mentors can guide you in developmental steps and help you to avoid key mistakes. They can also help promote your reputation within the workplace.

2. Take Responsibility for the Results
Staff who produce are usually noticed and rewarded. Keep a record of positive steps that you used to improve your work and share them at the right moment. This will show your problem solving skills and creative work ethic.

3.  Help Find Ways to Cut Cost

In today’s economy, You are valuable if you can find ways to save the company’s money or to use the difference to fix another problem.  (Double win)

4. Establish a Healthy Respect and Be loyal to Your Boss
In most cases, your supervisor can make or break your career. Learning to foster that relationship is a key that is often overlooked. Ask regularly for ways to improve your performance.  Take time to get to know them and tell them often about the strengths you see in them – they need encouragement too.

5. Develop a Mindset for Professional Development
There is really no secret here – the more you know – the more valuable you become to the organization.  Don’t let the job changes or technology changes pass you up. Be willing to explore new ways to improve every day.  You must stay connected to what is happening in your field outside the workplace. Let the market set the bar for the knowledge and skills that are needed to stay successful.

6. Building New Bridges
You must learn to connect with other professional people. This is a key to landing new opportunities. knowing when to utilizing the strengths of others in problem solving will make you a stronger leader. Peers tend to suggest people they know for new career opportunities. Take time to get to know successful people from across the community. External praise for your contribution in the community can be a plus if you are productive at work.

7. How Much Responsibility Can You Handle?
Be willing to volunteer to help out other departments is a great way to show you can handle more responsibilities. Look for stress points and opportunities to be a great team player.

8. Professional Attitude and Conduct
Start acting like a leader long before you are promoted. Treat coworkers with respect.

  • Dress professionally  – even on casual days.
  • Ask questions when you aren’t sure.
  • Do your homework on stress points
  • Attitude is everything in good and bad times
  • Don’t play the blame game – attack the problems – not people.
  • Devote the time to finish strong on all assignments
  • Choose time off wisely to avoid important work times.
  • Solve problems and just don’t report them to your boss. Always offer a solution when presenting the problem.

9. Know the Culture

Take time to learn about the people you work with and the past history of your employer. Look for ways to meet key players who have shape the company and learn from them. I am amazed on how many people overlook this key career building step.

10. Look for Opportunities to Contribute

Use your strengths to help correct neglected areas when you see them. This will help others to see the abilities you have to help the organization.  Choose them wisely.

What experiences or skills have worked for you? What advice would you give others?

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4 thoughts on “10 Tips to Help You Get Promoted

  1. Gary,

    It’d be hard to add much to your list without being redundant. I would like to comment on the personal accountability aspect of getting promoted. Too often I see good people either trying to keep up with the crowd or letting the crowd keep them from advancing. If we could just stay focused on what the job is that we got hired for, stay in our lane so to speak, we wouldnt get distracted by what others are doing.

    Don’t get me wrong, there are aspects of a team that can benefit us as well. Confidence in your own unique ability, however, is a very attractive trait when you are trying to climb that latter. I see that as a good thing.


    • Thanks Van

      I agree that some people seem to try to run with the pack since it is socially the norm. However they set their work standards also on that level of acceptance which is not good for career development. Confidence does usually play a huge factor in this approach. I say once you’re in the game – try to set a new bar for the work and encourage others to follow.

  2. Great tips! Promotion does take responsibility to one’s self. We must first learn to take responsibility to ourselves before we can make others see that we are responsible enough to handle responsibilities related to work and it does take hard work.

  3. Building new bridges. Correct! I do believe reaching out to people does broaden your horizon. Meeting new people and reaching out to them is opening doors to different opportunities. You’ll never know maybe one of them may recommend or help you land in the promotion you always wanted. Promotion do sometimes work through connections.

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