When it comes to promotions, you need to be confident you are the best person for the job and that you are ready to fill the position in the way it needs it and meet the demands of the job role.
With this in mind, it goes without saying that your employer will have specific skills, characteristics, and expertise they will look for when hiring internally, especially. Internal promotions should be encouraged in all industries, and doing so can be highly beneficial to the company in many ways, including having someone in the position who is familiar with the company and how it operates, boosting staff morale, and improving retention rates, to name a few.
So how do you put yourself front and center for an internal promotion and ensure you are ready to step up to the plate when the time comes?
Talk to Your Boss
Before you even put plans in place, you need to let your employer know you are interested in moving up the ranks with them to get the ball rolling. If they don’t know you are looking for a promotion, you might not be considered to be in the running. Talking to your boss will help you to get some feedback on where you are right now, where they see your future with the company, and how you can get yourself ready to take the next step. This can be a valuable tool in helping you to determine what position you would be best for and how others within the company view your skills and expertise in your current job role. Even if it indicates you aren’t quite ready yet, you can give yourself a starting point to develop what you need so you are prepared for future opportunities.
Understand the Company
To take advantage of internal promotions, you must fully understand what the company is about, its goals and objectives, and its ethos to fully insert yourself into the organization. It is essential to understand that doing this doesn’t mean you need to take on more within the company. It simply means you need to be doing more of the right things and work to company policies and procedures more carefully than you might have previously been doing.
Start by looking around your team; what is it they do, and how are they integral to the department? What is your immediate boss’ role, how does it benefit the company, and how can you support the theme better? Does the company ethos match your own, and are you comfortable with taking on greater responsibilities within the organization? Talk to other managers and leaders to get their perspectives, show an active interest in the company as a whole, and be willing to invest time into learning more about how everything slots together to be able to position yourself as a valuable asset to the management team.
Taking on a more significant workload and stepping into higher positions within the company doesn’t mean you need to be more domineering and authoritative. While you do need some aspects of these traits, they aren’t the way to getting a promotion alone. Excellent leaders take the time to understand the needs of the business and the people around them. They listen, communicate effectively, understand body language, can quickly respond to issues and complications, and are quick on their feet when resolving problems.
You need to be a critical thinker who knows how to resolve conflicts within teams and possibly even clients, should have a forward-thinking can-do attitude, and be willing to take charge where possible without taking over completely. It can be worth looking into taking a course to brush up on your soft skills, learn how to communicate better, and invest in a TKI Assessment to learn how you handle conflict and your preferred resolution styles, as well as how others approach conflicts such as this so you are can work more effectively with others.
To show leadership and initiative qualities, you need to be proactive in your job role. How can you make things easier for everyone? What does your boss need on a daily basis to get the job done? Do you require any assistance, or can you work efficiently with as little supervision as possible?
By doing your own work independently, looking out for the company’s values, and even taking a more active interest in the industry as a whole, you can show your enthusiasm for the job role and your ambitions to allow you to take charge and get the job done should you be promoted. It doesn’t even need to be within your own department. You might find that you have reached the career ceiling where you are currently and are making the move to a department with transferable skills, and promotion avenues can be the best course of action. Seek them out and find out where there are lateral moves within the company you can make to ensure you keep moving and striving for more.
Other ways you can be proactive include; taking over jobs your boss struggles with or doesn’t like to complete, suggesting changes that benefit the team to make things easier, volunteering to lead projects, or covering a colleague’s duties when they’re on vacation. This will allow you to take on more responsibilities and show the breadth of your skills and suitability for any upcoming internal promotions.
If you really want this position, you shouldn’t be waiting for someone to see how perfect you are for the role; you need to make waves and show yourself to be good at your job and capable of taking on the extra duties the position requires. Work hard, invest in your skills, and take your work ethic to the next level to get your name on the table when the time comes.