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How to Get Promoted Fast

Growth Trends for Related Jobs

Ever feel like everyone around you is climbing the career ladder while you're stuck on the bottom run? Most people think success depends on talent, brains and an Ivy League education. Wrong! Career success is easier than you think.

How to Get Promoted Fast

Be on time. Nothing says “go--getter” like being the first person on the job. If starting time is 8 a.m., be there at 7:45. Not standing at the coffee machine chatting. Be at your desk, computer on, papers out. Chances are, the boss is an early bird. When he walks down the hall, he’s sure to notice that you are, too.

Ditto, in reverse. Stay late. Bosses often cruise the office around 6:00 p.m. It’s a way to gauge who’s serious about their job. Don’t like the idea of donating a little extra, unpaid time? Face facts. Clock-punchers never get promoted. Consider the extra time an investment in your future.

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Look like a leader.The adage that you should dress for the position you want, not the one you have, is true. The more professional you look, the more you’re viewed as a professional. It’s cool to read about companies with basketball courts and ice cream breaks, but that’s not the norm. Wear a jacket (even if it comes from a discount store), dress pants, dress shoes and a subdued hair style. Still unclear? Turn on CNBC, a leading business TV channel. That’s how serious business people dress.

Volunteer for everything .People who won’t grab coffee or help set up a meeting are setting themselves up for failure. Bosses want a “can--do” person who’ll do whatever is required. You’ll earn a reputation for being reliable and hard-working.

Make your intentions known. Not by asking for a promotion, but by making it clear to everyone that you’re there to learn and succeed. People love to share what they know. Ask questions. Ask for career advice. When execs need extra help on a project, they’ll think of you first.

Know the company. Study, study, study. Learn everything you can. What are its goals? It’s market niche? Read the company’s annual report, especially the chairman's letter. Study promotional materials.Check out the company web site. Know all the key players by name and position. Remember, it’s your company. It's your career.

Last and perhaps most important, never assume there is no room for promotion just because there aren’t any advertised positions. If you’re good enough, someone will create a job just for you. By following the guidelines above, you’ll be so indispensible your job will expand and your title will demand adjustment. There’s also a good chance that another department will grab you before your own boss can give you that much-deserved promotion. Either way, you’re a career winner.

About the Author

Dona McConnell ran a creative agency in Atlanta for 25 years, which produced an average of 200 print jobs per month. That position also including ghostwriting speeches and books. She has contributed short stories to two books, and since leaving the corporate world, has taught writing at two colleges in North Carolina.

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