Find a Mentor Within Your Company
A mentor can help guide all facets of your career, including your journey up the professional career ladder. You can make your mentoring relationship a formal one obtained through a mentoring program or an informal one. Choose a mentor you feel comfortable with so that you can talk openly and honestly. Your mentor should also feel comfortable enough with you to point out your weaknesses and how you might work on them.
While any mentor can help you, the most beneficial ones are senior professionals within your organization. In addition to providing insight into the company and its expectations, your mentor can also put a good word in for you with people who occupy significant leadership positions within the company.
Maintain a Positive Attitude
You might find staying positive difficult as deadlines loom and roadblocks hamper your professional efforts. But it’s worth doing whatever you can to keep a smile on your face. According to CareerBuilder research, employers say that having a negative or pessimistic attitude is the top obstacle standing in the way of workers getting promoted.
When you feel angry or frustrated at work, remember to take a few deep breaths and keep your composure. Maintaining your upbeat attitude, even when faced with adversity, can pay off.
Maintain Professional Standards
Maintaining professional standards is immensely important. But you might be surprised by how often workers let those standards slip when they’re comfortable in their workplaces.
Additional employer turnoffs reported to CareerBuilder include all types of professional faux pas including the following:
- Regularly arriving to work late or leaving early
- Using vulgar language within the workplace
- Taking an excessive amount of sick days
At minimum, break these bad habits, then add some new ones:
- Dress smartly at all times, even on casual days.
- Ask questions when you’re unsure about something.
- Avoid whining or complaining when something doesn’t go your way; instead problem-solve a way to fix them.
Start Promoting Yourself
We’re taught from an early age that modesty is a virtue, but humble will only get you so far up the corporate ladder. If you’re leaning toward a promotion, you need to know how to promote yourself first.
Chat with your manager about your career aspirations and how your supervisor thinks you’re tracking to meet them. Don’t be afraid to take credit for your role in the company’s successes. Get into the habit of writing monthly emails to your manager detailing your recent role in helping sales managers with their work, for example. Keep a personal record of your achievements so that you can easily recall them if you’re asked why you deserve a promotion.
Volunteer for More Responsibilities
You might feel like you’re busy enough with your own tasks, but if you can take on extra responsibilities, you’ll show that you’re a valuable member of the team and one worthy of promotion. Consider volunteering for jobs not only within your department, but also in other areas of the company. The tasks you’ll receive from other related departments will give you an opportunity to understand more about the business and potentially gain new skills.
Gain New Knowledge
In the modern business environment, qualifications matter. The good news is that in the digital age, these qualifications are easier to get than ever before. Many credible colleges offer online courses that allow you to pursue your bachelor’s degree or advanced degrees from the comfort of your own home, at a time that suits you. You might also consider enrolling in seminars and conferences that deepen your understanding of your industry and the latest technology used within it.
Don’t keep your educational studies a secret, though. You’ll likely impress your boss by your initiative, and your employer may offer to reimburse you for some of the tuition costs involved with your academic studies.
When you combine the right professional skills and professional attitude, you’ll have the qualities and the mindset you need to impress your boss when you ask for that promotion you know you deserve.