You’ve been at your job for a couple of years, and maybe you’re beginning to get bored and need more of a challenge. Or maybe you took the job because your family moved, or you needed more money, and it was all that was available at the time. You’d like to move up in your company, but you’re not sure how. Here are three steps you can take to propel yourself into a position you want!
- Start by listing everything that you do, even if it’s not in your job description.
Say you have a job inspecting products on an assembly line. You stand for long periods of time, you have to pay close attention to what you’re doing and you must make certain that the product has been built correctly and works properly. That’s the “job description” part of your job. But in addition to that, you know enjoy your relationships with your coworkers and often find that they come to you for help because you’re approachable. You also know that you frequently catch others’ mistakes and help them correct them. Sounds like you’d be great in a management position!
- Build relationships with people you can learn from.
Once you’ve made a list of what you do and identify what you enjoy doing and what you’re good at, seek out people who can help you grow. Develop a good relationship with your manager, and ask him or her to help you come up with a plan to build on your strengths and improve upon your weaknesses. Be as transparent as possible; let your manager know that you want to learn more because you’d like to move forward within the company. A good manager won’t be threatened by your motivation, especially if you are clear that you believe you can better serve the company by moving into a different position.
If you don’t feel comfortable going to your manager, or simply want more resources, find people or groups outside your company that you can talk to about building on your skills. Did you know that in most cities, there are Meetups for nearly any type of interest, including learning new job skills? Click here to search Meetup groups in your area. Local Chambers of Commerce often host networking events where you can meet others in your industry; click here for the Asheville Chamber of Commerce website and here for the Burke County Chamber, or simply Google “Chamber of Commerce near me” to find the one closest to you.
After you’ve identified the job you want and while you’re gaining more knowledge, be sure to show ‘em that you’ve got what it takes to move up! Keep a positive attitude; always try to approach challenges in your job by showing a willingness to work toward a solution, not by pointing fingers or placing blame. Be willing to take on tasks that are outside your job description. And be determined to never stop learning. Your can-do spirit will soon be noticed by everyone around you, which not only will improve your chance to be promoted, but will more than likely inspire others to do that same. And that’s never a bad thing!
Now You’re Ready
As you’re taking your steps, be sure to keep detailed records of all the things you’ve done. Good businesses are concerned with their bottom line and with employee satisfaction, so show how you helped keep costs down by catching all those mistakes and how you helped resolve a conflict between coworkers by sitting down with both of them to talk about the problem. Again, be as transparent as possible with your supervisor or HR department; let them know how motivated you are to move up in the company so they can be on the lookout for opportunities for you.
Once you hear about a job opening in your company, or even if you decide to pitch creating a position (hey, might as well reach for the stars!), go to your manager or HR and let them know you’d like to talk. Then bring in the list of what you’ve done and how it’s helped the company. Even if another position isn’t available right away, they’ll be impressed with your motivation, and chances are you’ll be next in line to move up!