Lots of people are convinced that their solid, hard work will automatically be noticed at the office, and that as a result they will get promoted. Unfortunately, this is not always true. Another misconception is that being popular and liked by everyone is not really so important in the workplace. The importance of being well-liked is often underestimated. In this post, I want to outline the 7 best ways to be liked, improve your image, and help get promoted quickly.
1. Tell management what you have achieved
Don’t assume your line manager has seen all your great work. There will be opportunities to mention your successful projects and also how you have met deadlines. Some people are shy about blowing their own horns. But if you do this diplomatically, you can be in a very strong position to get promoted when it comes up. You have had great results and they are backed up by figures, assessments, and reports.
2. Manage your personal brand effectively
One of the most effective ways to improve your image is to share your knowledge and skills with coworkers. Sharing and caring is the best way of managing your own brand because people will appreciate all your assets and talents. They will not resent this because you have helped them. You will be very popular.
Your personal brand is going to shine if you are capable of looking after the following:
- People skills
- Team building
- Positive approaches to problem solving
Showcasing your achievements will go hand in hand with your ability to coach and mentor others. These in turn will be key factors in your aim to get promoted.
3. Think outside the box and be creative
When we think of Velcro, Aspirin, Viagra and other inventions, we are thinking of products in the “serendipity zone.” The serendipity zone is where chance and good luck played a key role in many discoveries. It would be naïve to think of serendipity as good fortune alone. It is much more than that. I often prefer to think if it as a close relative of creativity because it is your ability to take an unusual idea and make creative use of it. This is difficult to achieve as we tend to have tunnel vision at work.
Look at the example of Howard Schultz, the founder of Starbucks. He was sent to Milan to buy coffee beans. He noticed that coffee bars there had a social function and were a key social and business meeting point. The combination of coffee and networking seemed to work perfectly. His management rejected his idea because they were not interested in going into catering or running restaurants. Schultz left the company and started his own coffee shop. That was the birth of Starbucks.
Take the quiz here to see how good you are at earning serendipity. Showing your ability to think creatively outside the box could be a great asset in your quest to get promoted.
4. Work and collaborate with colleagues to get liked
Being a great team player and working collaboratively are always looked for when decisions are made about who will get promoted. Your working attitude and your relationships with colleagues will be a determining factor in your career. It is well worth investing time in the following:
- Be friendly–make it your default attitude
- Respect other people’s opinions–be an active and polite listener
- Offer to help colleagues when they have problems
- Show appreciation for work done–leave a post-it or send an email
- Be a ‘can do’ person always—rarely say no and do not complain if a task seems too difficult
- Avoid negative and toxic office politics; use diplomacy wisely
- Avoid getting into a complaining mode—nobody likes a whiner; always see the positive side
- Be cheerful—people will naturally be attracted to you.
5. Go the extra mile
You will be measured by your results. Striving to over-deliver is always a great way to give management and colleagues a positive impression. Avoid shortcuts and make excellence (not perfection) your trademark.
6. Avoid getting into a rut
“If I can’t make it through one door, I’ll go through another door—or I’ll make a door. Something terrific will come no matter how dark the present.” – Joan Rivers
Getting into a rut can be fatal to your efforts to get promoted. Look around and see what is happening in your industry. Keep up to date and network as far as possible. Examine your skills set and ask for new training opportunities whenever they are offered. This will help you in getting promoted, as you can match your skills set with the job requirements. If you get into a rut, it sometimes means you are in a tunnel and there is no light at the end of it—not even an oncoming train!
7. Decide whether to move on
Often a career move is the best way to get promoted. If you no longer feel passionate about your job, or if your employer is not showing appreciation of your work and talent, then it may be time to consider leaving your company. You could also mention what your career plans are in the performance assessment. When your manager fails to give you new opportunities for growth and advancement, then it may be time to consider a move. You might want to consider the following questions before deciding:
- Do your skills and competencies match the job requirements?
- Will they offer you a chance to grow and advance your career?
- What is the company culture?
- Are there adequate human resources in the department/team you are applying to?
- How much training for skills development are available and how is this encouraged?
- What is the average tenure for the position?
These are just pointers to consider before deciding that to move up you may have to move on.
We have looked at the various ways to improve your professional image and also how to get on the fast track for promotion. Let us know in the comments what you did to get liked and get promoted.
Featured photo credit: Image of two young businessmen using touchpad at meeting via shutterstock.com