4 Ways to Minimize the Gap Between Where You Are Now and Your Next Promotion
When you see advertised that tempting career advancement keep in mind that you may not be ready to take the leap into a senior position. While many middle managers dream of being a boss one day and excelling in their chosen industry, sometimes the gap between where they are now and where they need to be is too wide.
Are you ready for that next promotion or is there a bottomless gulf separating you from the advancement you’ve always wanted?
What sorts of things are causing the gap? Let’s have a closer look.
When pursuing your next tempting career advancement opportunity, the only person who truly knows what the gaps are is you. The most important thing to remember to get ahead in your career is that you should take charge of properly preparing yourself.
You will need to do a lot of research, and this means working extra hours and even on your lunch break. You will have to research that next opportunity whether it is available now or not. Why wait and then rush around trying to shorten the gap? You need to act now.
1. Make Sure You Are Perceived Well by Others
It is imperative that you “position” yourself strategically for that next opportunity. This means ensuring that you and the work you do is perceived well by others.
For example, it’s all very well being the joker of the team, but being fun-loving might be a quality that is needed or seen favorably in senior positions.
It isn’t difficult for others to see your strengths and know that these will help you get a promotion. However, it is crucial that they know your weaknesses, but don’t see them as something that can’t be changed. Do you demonstrate that you learn from your mistakes? Do you take responsibility for them, and don’t blame others?
2. Make Sure You Are Qualified to Do the Job
Are you qualified formally and informally to manage this senior position? Are there skills which you are lacking, but that are needed? While you will get some on-the-job training and extra skills demonstrated to you, can you be more ready for this position by upskilling now?
Being better qualified can really lessen the gap between where you are now and where you want to me. Knowing how to complete the tasks of a senior position are really going to help you fill that role.
If you need too, you may have to go back to study and reskill yourself. This may take more of your free time, but it will be worth it in the long run.
3. Make Sure You Understand what is Expect of You to Fulfil This Position
Know what is expected of the right person for this job. Can you bring those qualities to the table now or do you have some work to do?
Each position in any company has a set of formal expectations and a set of informal ones. Make sure you know the difference between these two, and that you are qualified to meet both.
There will be people in your company who can help you find out this information so now is the time to work in collaboration with your manager. Speak to them about your career goals and, not only listen to their advice, but act on it.
4. Learn from the Best – Take Note and Emulate the Qualities of the Person Who Last Held the Position
No one knows who to do the job well than the person who just had it. Don’t listen to rumors about their inadequacies if they are abound. Instead, consider that they fulfilled all the requirements of points 1, 2 and 3 above and then got the job.
To lessen the gap between you and them what do you have to improve? What then should you emphasize with regard to the advantages that you can bring to the job?
There will always be gaps between where you are and where you want to go. However, there is no reason why you can’t work hard to minimize them as much as possible.
While you might not completely fit one of the qualifications, perhaps you have something similar to offer that could fit the bill just the same. Make sure you present this in your application, acknowledging your shortcomings, but then emphasizing on what you offer instead.
Another approach is to capitalize the gaps. Discuss your shortcomings, but show how they can be an advantage to the position. Perhaps you are more open minded and eager to learn, or that you have managerial qualities learned from volunteer work at a club or social group.
The more research and knowledge you acquire when minimizing that gap, the better positioned you’ll be for your interview. You will feel more confident and more ready to take on a much deserved promotion.
And always remember:
Great managers are made. Not born.
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