You’re working hard, and you’re receiving accolades for a job well done. The problem is, there’s no obvious movement up the proverbial corporate ladder.
Instead of waiting around for something that may never happen, take matters into your own hands: Position yourself as promotion-worthy with these four ante-upping tips.
Prepare to lead
Given the current economy, most employers can’t sustain the cost of training someone for a high-performance position. You need to eliminate the learning curve and show you can make decisive, executive decisions and are able to solve problems at a moment’s notice. It’s also important to prove you can find and cultivate the talent needed to build successful, productive teams. Take the initiative when it comes to heading a task force, managing a project or developing employees.
Get trained and degreed
Attend leadership development seminars and take advantage of training opportunities your company offers in order to nurture and develop your skills. Meanwhile, consider furthering your education with an online MBA program. On top of positioning you for a promotion, having additional certification makes you less disposable. The numbers don’t lie. Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics showed that in 2012, the unemployment rate for master’s degree holders was 3.5% compared to 8.3% for those with only a high school diploma and 4.5% for those with a bachelor’s degree.
Move on, if necessary
There was a time when people spent their professional careers at a single company. Today, that’s rarely the case. Thoughtful, methodical career moves can, in fact, help advance your career. Reach out to your connections, and don’t be afraid to take a slight detour. Working in another department can make you more well-rounded—and, as a result, more indispensible—to future employers.
Do it right
Being a reliable employee goes a long way. So, show up to work on time—or, better yet, a few minutes early. Make sure you do your job and do it well; complacency gets you nowhere. Neither does gossiping and engaging in discussions about company or investing in office drama. Keep your head down, and keep doing your job.