27 September 2023

Key supporters on the path to promotion

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May Busch* lays out the next stage of your promotion plan — knowing the right people you need in your corner when the key decisions are made.

In my last article I asked: “Why should you be promoted?”

Knowing what makes you stand out as a promotion candidate — and being able to communicate it in a compelling way — is the first of the three essential steps to getting a promotion this year.

This brings us to the second essential step and that is knowing the answer to this: Who are the right people you need to get on board to support your promotion?

Having the support of the right people is essential to boosting your promotion prospects.

The more you are known to key stakeholders, the stronger your promotion prospects will be.

When you’re already busy with your job, you can’t afford to waste time on the wrong people or worry about whether you’re doing the right things.

What’s more, some decision-makers are so senior you’ll struggle to get a meeting or call.

Your boss might be a ‘gatekeeper’ who feels threatened if you talk to his managers on your own.

In all likelihood, even your boss’ boss won’t have the power to get you promoted on her own.

In my next article, I’ll cover the things you need to consider to win their support when you get face time with them.

In the meantime, focus on these questions to identify who your potential promotion supporters are:

Who are the stakeholders who really matter?

You’ll find three kinds of people you need to boost your promotion prospects — in your direct reporting line; in stakeholders who have a voice, and in your supporters, especially your sponsor and mentors.

What are the unspoken ways they determine if you’re ready for promotion?

These are signs they look for when deciding whether you can operate at the next level.

What gaps are there in your support base?

How can you influence those senior leaders in a way that feels authentic and fits into your busy work week?

How can you get in front of your key stakeholders?

This can be a challenge if you don’t have regular reasons to meet with them, but it’s not impossible.

You just have to take advantage of opportunities and get creative.

I encourage you to spend some time thinking about these questions — it’s okay if you can’t answer them (yet).

Next time, I’ll share a simple way to help you identify the people you need to get on board to support your promotion.

Knowing who the right people are to back your promotion is the second step to getting promoted this year.

Once you’ve identified who your potential supporters are, the third (and final) essential step to get a promotion this year is knowing how to have the conversations and make your case for promotion.

*May Busch works with smart entrepreneurs and top managements to build their businesses. She can be contacted at [email protected].

This article first appeared at maybusch.com.

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