One of my clients asked me recently how I get promoted so quickly in my jobs. They had said that for as long as they had been hiring me (2+ years) they always noticed that I was usually promoted in 6 months or less.
To me this is normal, I have always been promoted quickly and I assumed that I was getting promoted at a regular cadence compared to my peers. Turns out that is not the case, so I want to help you all out and give you my secret.
Are you ready?
Are you sure?
Here it is…
DO YOUR JOB.
Whattttttt. Mind blown.
That might sound insulting, but let me explain what I mean by this. Often times we are doing what we think our job is versus what our job actually is. Here’s an example: I am a project manager and I thought that my job was to manage projects and make sure they were completed by the appropriate date.
That was partly true, but some of the feedback that I got was I needed to manage my relationships with my sponsors a little more and exceed their expectations.
In reality, I was only doing part of what my job is and not the entirety of the job itself. So my full job could be summed up as: to manage projects, minimize risks, deliver quality customer service to sponsors and leave the sponsor feeling as if their project is the only one on my plate.
Notice how much my job has changed just based on that added information.
But, Ryan, how am I supposed to know all of these nuances of what my job is?
Ready to have your mind blown again? Ask.
Ask your supervisor what the expectations of your job are and how you can exceed them. That will give you a good starting point. Then ask someone else who you regularly work with to give you the same advice to fill in the gaps.
I’m not saying this will get you promoted right away, I am saying that it will put you on the right path. There is one thing that will derail your success every time and prevent you from moving forward in your career.
The thing that you need to avoid at all costs is ego. If you have a chip on your shoulder take it off now. I don’t care if you are the best at what you do, still proceed as if you’re a beginner.
Here is how I manage my career, it is my mantra: work like a contractor, act like a full-time employee.
What it means is that you should work as if you don’t know whether or not you will have a job tomorrow, but you should treat the company’s interests as your interests and be thinking about the big picture.
Now go forth my young padawan and be an absolute badass.