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How to Get a Promotion & Accelerate Your Career

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The old adage “good things come to those who wait” may be true in some contexts, but this certainly isn’t true when it comes to your career. You can’t just sit back and wait for promotions to come your way.

If you want to rise up in your company as quickly as possible, you need to be proactive.

Read on to learn how to get a promotion and useful tips for rising rapidly through the ranks of your company.

how to get a promotion

6 Ways to Get Promoted Sooner

Although building a successful career largely involves a lot of hard work and consistent high levels of performance over years, there are a number of things you can do to speed up the process.

1. Step up Your Skills

Developing your skills means you can deliver more value to your company, as you’ll be equipped to give better results. It also demonstrates a desire to continually improve, which is something employers look for when promoting staff members.

There are a wide range of ways to develop your professional skills, from workplace training to MOOCs and fully online degrees.

2. Talk to Your Manager

If you want to be successful in the workplace, whether you measure this success by being promoted or in other ways, it’s essential to actively seek feedback. You should regularly check in with your supervisor to see how you’re tracking, what you’re doing right, and what you could improve.

Besides this, sometimes the key to getting promoted is simply to put yourself out there. Ask to sit down with your manager and go over your career goals, and make it clear that you want to progress in the company as quickly as possible. This kind of visibility could make the difference between being considered for a promotion instead of being overlooked.

When you speak to your supervisor, be prepared to sell yourself. Ahead of the meeting, prepare some talking points that demonstrate why you deserve a promotion, such as:

  • How you’ve grown, skills you’ve gained, and your achievements during your current role
  • The value you’ve delivered to your company so far (best if you can back this up with specific examples or figures)
  • The extra value you’ll be able to give the company if you’re promoted

During the conversation, it’s important to be as direct and specific as possible. Don’t be afraid of openly stating that you want to be promoted within a specific timeframe, or ask exactly what you need to do to get promoted.

3. Put Your Hand Up for Extra Projects

If you want to rise up within your company as quickly as possible, you need to stand out from your colleagues. An excellent way to do this is by volunteering for extra projects or taking on additional responsibilities.

This could include volunteering to spearhead a new initiative or taking on an additional workplace role, such as a first aid or occupational health and safety officer.

This will give you that extra bit of visibility that could make you stand out and ultimately get you promoted!

4. Develop Situational Awareness

Situational awareness is an important part of rising up through the ranks. One of the best ways to identify what your company is looking for is to pay close attention to the people they promote. 

Consider your colleagues who’ve been promoted in recent months or years: what do they have in common? What behaviours, habits, and traits do they have? Do they take initiative to suggest new approaches and projects, or do they attend every company event without fail?

Recognising these common factors can be extremely useful in knowing what habits to cultivate that will put you first in line for promotion. For example, you may need to make more of an effort to socialise with your colleagues, take on extra responsibilities, or demonstrate high levels of initiative.

5. Be Consistent

Consistent work performance is another essential factor to building a successful career within your company. Having an unbreakable work ethic and consistently delivering strong results will give you strong arguments to demonstrate why you should be promoted.

This could include identifying problems and coming up with solutions to solve them. Being a positive presence that inspires others can also go a long way to make you stand out as a valuable employee.

Just showing up and doing a consistently good job may not be enough to get you promoted. However, it will provide a strong basis that you can combine with some of the other approaches on this list to rise quickly in your company.

6. Demonstrate that You’re a Leader

You may not be in a leadership role yet, but that doesn’t mean you can’t show your employer that you have what it takes to be a leader. Take the initiative to cultivate leadership skills to prepare you for the job you want in the future.

It’s also important to demonstrate leadership qualities in action. Even if you’re not officially a supervisor or manager, you can show that you’re a natural leader by motivating others, modelling the right behaviours, and leading your colleagues in mini projects.

Be Active in Pursuing Your Dream Career

There are a range of factors that are key to how to get a promotion, from being active in seeking feedback and talking to your supervisor about your career goals, to taking on extra responsibilities and demonstrating your leadership qualities.

Above all else, professional development will help you to rise up within your company as quickly as possible. Further education not only equips you with a higher level of skills and knowledge, but it also demonstrates your willingness to learn and shows your employer just how valuable you are, which will go a long way to allowing you to secure that next promotion!

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