Latest "success" Posts
At a conference last month, I sat next to a professionally dressed and extremely articulate young man who’d recently been hired as COO of a medical services company.
“What are your biggest challenges?” I asked him.
He went on to explain that his board of directors was unhappy because profits had plateaued. His R&D staff was not very innovative. The HR systems were not efficient. The IT department was slow to fix issues. And the sales staff was barely meeting quotas. By the time he finished talking, there were few departments in his organization left that hadn’t been targeted for blame.
“So, where does the responsibility for all of these problems lay?” I asked, genuinely curious to hear how he’d answer.
The man silently stared at me for about a minute.
A colleague’s daughter contacted me recently after being passed over twice for a choice promotion. She told me she really wanted to advance in the company, but didn’t seem to have what they were looking for.
“I’m responsible, easy to work with, and really good at my job,” she said to me.
“So what do you think is missing?” I asked … already knowing what she’d say.
She confirmed my suspicions: “I’m just not being perceived as a leader or someone who can effectively manage projects and teams.”
I believe that leadership presence is a combination of character traits and skills that can be learned. People must first identify — and embrace — their areas of strengths and opportunities for growth before embarking on a quest for leadership recognition.
One of my past coaching clients recently reached out to me to reconnect. He was proud of his latest accomplishment — moving from a sales role to a marketing position within the same organization.
Greg felt he would have a better opportunity for advancement and less travel in the new marketing position, and he was indeed thriving.
He shared how he accomplished this move successfully with the use of internal advocates. Greg first identified the type of advocates he needed; people in the marketing department.
Greg then narrowed his focus on two people that could influence the hiring decision. He LinkedIn with them, and let them know when he would be at headquarters, and asked for informational interviews.
At these meetings, Greg gave them insights from the field that could help with their next marketing campaign.
Yet another story that proves the importance of visual signals and polishing your package…
While the story below happened a while ago, it’s one that still resonates — and is relevant — to this day.
The managing director of a large financial services firm approached me after a presentation that I delivered to his group, and asked if he could speak privately.
He told me about an employee at his firm with brilliant ideas and an incredible track record — someone who had all the attributes to be promoted to partner. But, she wasn’t.
When I asked him what the problem was, he actually hemmed and hawed but eventually told me her professional image (or lack thereof) was holding her back. He asked if I would meet with her to discuss possible executive coaching.
Yes, if you do a fantastic job, you might be noticed by the “right” people. You might be praised and rewarded. You might even be promoted.
It’s also possible that years will go by while you are waiting for any of that to happen.
“If you want a promotion, if you want greater responsibility, or you want to have your dream job or career, then you need to take charge and stop sitting around waiting.”
You know you have the talents, skills and big dreams. It’s time to market yourself in the most powerful and effective ways that will propel your career to greater heights.
There are many self-marketing strategies, but one technique that’s frequently overlooked is what I call “involvement.” This is no tricky piece of jargon; it means exactly what you might think …
Get involved, strategically, with specific goals in mind.