Corporate ladder climbing is a skill. A lot of the times, it means going the extra mile and taking on more work than necessary in order to get noticed and seem indispensible. Being a go-getter, furthering your education by taking classes like PMP certification classes, making connections, and learning a skill that no one else can do are great ways to make yourself primed for a move up the corporate ladder.
Be the Go-Getter Everyone’s Talking About
If you want to get your boss’ attention, you need to be visible. That means taking advantage of every opportunity that prevents itself to show what you can do for the company. Some of your colleagues may look at this behavior as being a kiss-up, but being a go-getter doesn’t necessarily mean you need to act like a sycophant. Working hard and taking every opportunity to prove your worth is the way promotions are won and if no one else is willing to do the work, then you should be rewarded.
Further Your Education
Once you’ve gotten to where you are in your career, there’s a good chance that you never even think about going back to further your education. If you’re thinking like that, the others jockeying for the next promotion are probably thinking the same exact way. Going back to college to get your Masters or Doctorate is a great way to stand out from the rest of the pack, but it’s not the only way to go. There are plenty of classes you can take that teach skills specific to the type of job you have. For example, if you are a project manager (or looking to become one), PMP certification classes can give you an advantage over your competition.
In order to make a name for yourself in your field, it’s important to not only cultivate relationships within your office, it’s also important to branch out and maintain healthy working relationships with suppliers, clients, and even competing businesses. You may find yourself at a dead-end with your company; bottlenecks tend to happen in smaller companies when there are few jobs to go around at the top, so it’s good to keep the lines of communications open with other places in order to keep your options open. Meanwhile, if you keep a good relationship with your clients, when the opportunity to move to a different company comes along, you may be able to bring your client with you.
Learn a Skill that No One Else Can Do
For the most part, you and your colleagues work together because you all have a similar skill set. If you’re on the accounts department of an advertising agency, for example, you are all able to cultivate good relationships with clients and to communicate their needs to the creative team. In order to keep yourself from being a faceless part of the middle-management crowd, you need to bring a skill to the table that no one else can claim. It could be something like putting together all the presentations on PowerPoint or Keynote. It could even be something simple, like organizing all the office parties. Whatever it is, you need to have a skill that reminds everyone in the office what you bring to the table on an everyday basis and what they would miss if you left.
If you are looking for a promotion, you will have to do some work to make yourself worthy of advancement. Remember, going the extra mile is only the first step to a promotion.
Carolyn T. is a school teacher and a business leader.