The Strategist

Seven barriers to promotion

04/19/2019 - 09:09

Your current position is great, but you feel you haven’t reached your limit yet? It is not clear how and where to grow professionally. Routine, stagnation follow you.

Here are seven barriers that prevent you from climbing the top of the career ladder.

Barrier number 1. Making everything perfect

We are raised in a perfectionism mode. First you have to have good grades, then go to a good university, then find a prestigious job and so on. Perfectionism often leads to complete stagnation and fear of making a mistake. We are used to bring everything to perfection and are afraid to take risks. Success is always a risky undertaking. Perfectionism and risk are opposite qualities. On the one hand, there is complete control over the situation, but on the other there is ability of “letting go”.

Only your level of stress can be brought to perfection, because it is impossible to control everything, and it is impossible to improve forever. A true leader must take blunders and oversights. Remember that there will always be mistakes, but there is no growth without them.

Barrier number 2. Minimizing your achievements

If you are not heard, most likely it happens because you are showing your insecurity. Remember how you talk about a successful business. The phrase “yes, I only helped a little” speaks not about you but about your insecurity, but your insecurity. Do not be afraid to say boldly what exactly you have done to make it work. 

Another manifestation of this barrier is total concealment of one’s merits. Many find it hard to talk about your successes, because they are afraid of boasting. But being shy of you own merits is much worse. To keep quiet about your successful projects is to close the door to a higher position. Do not conceal your achievements when it is worth talking about them.

Barrier number 3. Desire to please everyone

If you strive to please everyone, then you impede your development. The ability to take responsibility is an important quality, but sharing responsibility is no less important. It has long been known that it is impossible to please everyone, but many still try to succeed in this. Imagine a manager who continues to perform his duties from a previous position. What attitude will his new subordinates have to him? Learn to say no and delegate tasks.

Barrier number 4. Fanatical loyalty

How many cool professionals would occupy management positions without commitment to the team? Loyalty to your team is good, but until the moment when it does not interfere with deserved career growth. A potential leader does not want to leave his team because of the fear that they will not do it without him. And decides to stay on the same place. Leaving the team is a difficult decision, but you should always remember about your interests and development of the company.

Barrier number 5. Revaluation of personal competencies

To be well-versed is not enough for a new position. To apply for promotion, you need not only to fulfill your duties perfectly, but also to possess a large amount of additional information. If you want to become a leader, you still need to be able to manage and delegate. It is quite difficult to assess your competence on your own, so contact your colleagues for help. Ask to point out gaps in your work and strengths.

Barrier number 6. Do not use connections

A hundred useful contacts in your phone is worth nothing if you do not know how to use them. Many people are afraid to ask for a service or help because they perceive it as a manipulation. This is a big mistake. It is better to present this mutually beneficial exchange. You can ask for support even from a person whom you have seen once in your life, and offer him your service for this. It is important that both parties understand mutual benefits.

Barrier number 7. Hope for a miracle

If you think that your quality work will be noticed anyway and will be rewarded, you are mistaken. Even a perfect product itself needs advertising. It is not enough to do the job well. If you want to be noticed, learn how to properly present results of your work. Imagine meeting a CEO’s office in the hallway. He asks: "How are you, what's new?" This is your finest hour. You have a few moments to tell about yourself and your work in two sentences.

What do you say?

Based on "The Leader Habit. Master the Skills You Need to Lead--in Just Minutes a Day" by Martin Lanik

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