Each one of us aims to climb to the top of the organization hierarchy at work. But this is something easier said than done as at some point in our careers, we come across roadblocks that are seemingly insurmountable, which prevent us from advancing forward and getting promoted.
It is particularly frustrating when contemporaries who started at the same time that you did get ahead, while you remain stuck in the same position for years. So where did you go wrong and what can you do to improve your chances of getting promoted?
Well, quite simply, you need to increase your knowledge and develop skills that are relevant to the position you’re aiming for. Let’s discuss what those skills are and how to improve them.
Update Your Skills and Knowledge…
Companies change all the time, technologies change as well, what worked very well for you in the past when you were new to the organization, may not work for you now, under changed circumstances.
Update your knowledge and skills constantly, learn new programming languages, join an evening class at a university close to you to learn complex new skills such as data analytics, networking and so on. Never stop learning. This is especially true if you’re in a technical or programming job.
If you’re not sure about the skills currently in demand in your organization, talk to somebody from the HR and find out. If you’re in a relatively junior position and in a non-technical job, pick up the relevant and the latest technical skills.
For example, if you work at a big accounting firm, perhaps you can stand out from the rest of the crowd by learning Cloud Accounting software such as QuickBooks and KashFlow. This is just to give you an idea.
Develop Critical Soft Skills…
Getting ahead at work is not just about developing technical skills. It is equally about developing soft skills, such as conflict resolution, communication, diplomacy and presentation skills. You should practice talking to people while maintaining constant eye contact – this shows that you are a confident person. It helps to expand on your vocabulary, and develop a professional way of speaking. If you can, join a public speaking course, put an effort into learning presentation skills.
Never Indulge in Negativity at the Work Place…
Have you noticed that most people who are negative at work or bad-mouth the organization never really get promoted? This only serves to make them more bitter and resentful. Being a professional means never being negative at work or participating in office gossip. Remember – you will be closely watched by your managers. While it may be tempting to indulge in a bit of office gossip with your co-workers, you should stay away from it entirely, even at the cost of being branded a “company man/woman” by frustrated co-workers. It’s not worth it! Instead, use any free time you get at work to learn more about the organization, find out how you can make a difference.
Be the First to Take Initiative…
Be a problem solver; go beyond the call of duty. Find areas at work that are in need of an improvement. Is there anything you can do to make the organization just a little more efficient? Are there any processes that you think you can improve? Is there a way to cut time, make things faster, and ensure greater customer satisfaction? Think like a manager or an owner, not just as an employee. Be confident and take the initiative all the time. Remember, no good deed goes unrewarded!