So you have a job and are making money to support yourself and your family. It would be safe to presume that you are well educated, smart, hardworking and sincere. You have also good experience which you have gained over couple of months or couple of years.
Yet you have this feeling that you are not at the level where you should have been. You have this nagging feeling that your batch mates and ex colleagues are doing much better in their careers compared to you.
You don’t care so much about job security now as you think that you are capable, energetic and you feel that you deserve a much better job than you are doing currently. Another feeling could be that your rate of career growth in the company or the industry is much slower than what it should have been.
Your Desire to Fast Track Your Career in the Corporate World
Whatever may be the exact set of circumstances and the type of feelings you are having, in nut shell you want to make more money, better perks, higher position, more authority and respect and to move up the corporate ladder.
The Conventional Method of Career Progress
During our college days and later when in employment, most of us have been brought up with the belief system to Work Hard, Be Sincere, Take Extra Responsibilities, Prove Your Worth First and above all have Patience. Again, I believe you have tried this path to achieve career success but the promotions, raise or the increments were not at all to your level of expectations. Right? Otherwise, you would not have been reading this article.
The Shortcut Method of Career Progress
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It is quite possible that some of you may think that they should have taken some smart route or some shortcuts. Perhaps, you have seen some people doing some smart things to overtake the normal people and have done rather well for themselves in professional life.
At this point, it may be emphatically mentioned that in life shortcuts rarely pay-off. Career shortcuts work much the same way. For example, I know of a lady who was working for a very large organisation which employed people of nationalities. To begin with, this lady was pretty smart, good at communications and a go getter. But she rather used her assets and creative energies in the wrong way. She would keep herself employed in flattery and sycophancy of her boss. She was also good at managing her colleagues who would gladly do her regular work. But this did not last long. Her boss changed. The new boss was a lady too and a very knowledgeable, experienced and smart one. The new boss could see through her tricks in a very short time. The lady was fired!
But there are quite a few things which you can do to increase your career growth speed and set yourself up for success and go at higher levels in the organisation hierarchy.
If you are in a hurry, watch this short video and come back later to read the article:
How to Turbo Boost Your Career: Strategies and Tips
Think like the owner of the Business
While working for any organisation, maintain the thinking and attitude “as if it were my money”. Like the business owners or the Managing Director or the Board of Directors, you will think and act on the lines of Return on Investment (ROI), Maximizing the wealth of shareholders, customer focused and Increase the sales and profitability etc. while maintaining a positive outlook and creative optimism to win over the team and your boss.
Having these qualities and working with a focus on these objectives will be noticed and appreciated by your management. This is sure to provide the turbo boost to your career – you are looking for.
Accept the idiosyncrasies of the Boss
It is perfectly normal to get a boss who is sometimes or at times or completely irrational about certain things. The boss is the person who is quite aware of his or her weakness or you may like to call it peculiarity. You are there to help him hide behind your efficient handling of the matters and smart dealing with others. For example, boss is always late for the meeting and you know it very well. Thus why not inform others that boss is going to be late or why not give two sets of timings – a particular time to boss and 15 minutes late to others. Believe you me, your boss will love you for this.
Similarly if your boss is very particular about the dress code then so be it. Don’t wear casuals or semi formals to the office. These are mild annoyances and nobody is going to benefit from defying or challenging the situation. Rather if you take just a little bit of effort to keep the boss or the manager happy, it is a Win Win situation. You have with a little care and efforts endeared yourself to your manager.
Every organisation has challenges which were not expected, every department has tasks which were not planned for or some new responsibilities which are pushed down from the top. On one hand, every employee and his work is accounted for, it becomes extremely difficult to carry out these tasks. Under such circumstances if you volunteer sometimes to do it gladly, you will be taken as God sent angel by the boss. If you don’t believe me then next time when you volunteer to shoulder the responsibility of executing a task, study the body language of the boss. He would be heaving a sigh of relief and also blessing you – silently though!
Don’t wait for the opportunity
It is said, “Opportunity knocks only once”. But let me add “opportunity knocks very softly, if at all it knocks”. In other words, don’t believe in automatic promotion or time bound increment or worst don’t believe too much in luck. Simply put, “don’t stand still for the good or favourable things to happen to you!”
Successful professionals are always in the process of consistently identifying opportunities in the organisation and then grabbing them with both the hands. Throughout their career, they don’t mind stretching themselves to extend and increase their reach. In your organisation too, you should put your hands up for new responsibilities and challenges both within your primary department and externally (other departments, sister organisations). Over a period of time, when the top management is looking for someone special who has extra but useful experience, your profile will be at the top of their list!
Develop your Personal Branding
So you have been working in your organisation in the best possible way. You are sincere, loyal, stable, very smart, a favorite of your boss, a darling of your colleagues and you team swear by you. You have consistently been performing very well quarter after quarter, year after year. But despite all this you find that the rate of your career growth is not impressive. Did you ever wonder why? Well the answer is very simple, the people who are the decision makers in your organisation do not know what is your worth and you have been doing. In modern terms, it means that you need to work on your Personal branding.
Personal branding specifically entails beating drums to communicating to the people who matter about Mr. YOU and your unique combination of qualities, abilities and strengths that make you an exceptional.
You need to have a good name and very good image for yourself in the company if you want to get promoted. People should be aware of your qualities, capabilities and your talents. You should always try to be in the limelight. If you have had any major accomplishments, or earned a prestigious award then make sure it stays in the air for a long time.
You should make it known that you are an invaluable human asset for the organisation. This exercise done on the regular basis will help you naturally stand out. This is also what will attract those who need what you offer most.
Get an Executive Coach
Nobody is perfect and nobody has all the knowledge. Therefore, you should take the services of a trained executive coach who is more experienced than you and who has the track record of mentoring and coaching others for a faster rate of career growth. Why do you think even the top players and sports persons always have a coach by their side throughout their career. Even the CEOs / COOs / Managing Directors have begun to believe in the power of Executive Coaching to transform their careers or to turbo boost their careers. You may also refer to: What Executive Coaching can do for you ?
Whether the field of sports or the Corporate world, the high cost of a good executive coach is worth every dollar you pay him. Listen to what your coach says, and taking his advice seriously act on it immediately. Your parents, friends, spouse are all your well wishers but the corporate manoeuvres are not their cup of tea. Your coach knows exactly when or how to steer you away from mistakes that may damage your image or take you away from the situation that may retard your growth upwards.
About the Author
Sundeep Kataria is the CEO of ACS Consultants – a Management Consulting Firm. He holds multiple qualifications: MBA, PGDIT (IIFT), MS in Counselling & Psychotherapy and Diploma in Company Law. He has also formally learnt Digital Marketing and Website Making.
In 1995 he pioneered the concept of professional Career Counselling, Executive Coaching and Mentoring. Over the years he has mentored many professionals, like CAs, Engineers, Sales & Marketing Professionals, IT Experts etc.
The unique style of Sundeep Kataria is that he connects with each and every individual personally, holds in depth discussion before undertaking the assignment.