A client of mine was just promoted among two other internal candidates. When I asked her why she though she was promoted over her colleagues and what advice she had for others wanting to get ahead at work, here is what she said:
I Love My Work and it shows. Jackie (not her real name) said she wakes up in the morning excited about getting to work. Can you say the same? If not, now is the time to identify what you are passionate about and what you have to do to find work that is aligned with your passion. Otherwise, you will be in the same place a year from now.
I take responsibility for my own development. Jackie told me she is always reading a book, working on a new certification or going to a conference. She takes the initiative in her career development and has even been willing to pay her own way to business and personal development seminars in the past eight years of her career.
Jackie told me, “One year I even took my vacation time to go to a conference, and while I wouldn’t do that regularly, my boss never forgot that and it paid off.”
I work more on my personal skills than I do on my job skills. Jackie knows that emotional intelligence is more important than technical skills. She said, “My technical skills got me the job but my people skills and my ability to connect with others and handle stress got me my promotion.”
When is the last time you read a book, took a webinar or listened to a podcast on how to be a better listener, how to influence others or how to thrive in the midst of stress? Do you have a self-development plan in place and are you following it?
There are always opportunities around the corner (or staring us right in the face) but the doors of opportunity don’t open themselves; we have to open them. In terms of your career, Jackie has given us three ways to do that. The rest is up to us.
Alan Allard, Career Coach/Leadership Coach/Speaker