CH Classic: How to Get Noticed by Your Boss’s Boss
A Career Hackers' Classic, read the full post here on Harvard Business Review.
You have the potential to be a rising star in your company but haven't been given the opportunities you desire. How can you stand out to senior leadership without going against your manager?
To find a solution, the author, Melissa reached out to two successful business leaders, Dave MacKeen and Chuck Cohen. These experts have years of experience recognizing "future stars" or high-potential employees who stand out through their drive to excel and make a difference.
Together, they came up with ten steps to help you get noticed by senior leadership and advance in your career. By following these steps, you can demonstrate your potential without going against your manager or coming across as overly ambitious.
How to Get Noticed by Your Boss’s Boss:
1. Demonstrate your commitment to your growth and to the company.
Invest in your growth by taking courses and reading relevant texts outside of work. Show your commitment to growth by expressing interest in challenging projects to benefit the company and develop new skills. Prove your dedication to career development and contribution to the company's success. By doing so, you can show that you are a valuable asset to the company.
2. Focus on the team’s success, rather than your own.
Senior leaders notice those who support others and work collaboratively, as the greatest opportunity for success lies in a team working well together. People who give their time and advice to help others succeed, whether they be direct reports or peers, are invaluable and easily noticeable by leaders.
3. Know your numbers and take ownership of your work.
To get noticed by senior leadership, it's crucial to know your business inside and out and be able to discuss important metrics and analytics. Be prepared to prove your value during presentations, meetings, or project reports. Showing full responsibility for your actions and adopting a "no excuses" mentality also demonstrate self-awareness and leadership potential.
4. Do what you say you will and do it well.
To succeed in your role, it's important to have a good track record of delivering results and being associated with good work. Show your commitment by taking on small projects and excelling, which will lead to bigger opportunities in the future.
5. Continually train yourself to think strategically.
Being a strategic thinker is crucial for leadership growth, balancing the balance between long-term strategy and day-to-day operations. To excel, one must have a broad perspective and consider the big picture when making decisions. Improving strategic thinking requires practice, like exercising a muscle. The more you work on it, the better you get.
6. Challenge old ways and find new solutions.
Share innovative solutions to problems with humility to show what you have to contribute. Forward-thinking organizations welcome all ideas. People who challenge the current process and communicate possibilities of different solutions are noticed and given more responsibilities, leading to growth opportunities.
7. Consistently improve your communication skills.
In short, be adaptable in your communication style and know your audience. Be thoughtful in interactions and prepare ahead of time. Show confidence or humility as needed and use data or curiosity as appropriate. Follow up to ensure a clear understanding of expectations.
8. Build relationships with people throughout the company.
To be successful, network and collaborate with other key players in the organization to expand your network and increase your visibility and influence. Don't wait to be asked, put yourself in situations where you can be asked to work collaboratively and cross-functionally.
9. Live the values and purpose of the organization.
To become a strong leader, it's important to know and uphold your company's values and purpose. Show your commitment by talking about these values in meetings and noting how they align with projects and colleagues' actions. Inspire others to follow by demonstrating these values and ethics in your own behavior. By doing this, you'll be recognized for paying attention and acknowledging great work.
10. Raise your hand.
Asking for opportunities to showcase your skills and talent is a good way to demonstrate initiative. Explain your potential contribution and what you stand to gain, but avoid pushing too hard or repeating the same request. Your boss wants to put you in a position where you can excel, so be proactive and ask for opportunities to support strategic initiatives.
Focus on these 10 key areas with dedication and patience. Growing a stellar career takes time, but by staying focused, you'll be ready for the next opportunity coming your way.
A Powerful excerpt from the blog:
“A person doesn’t need to be the most vocal or work the most hours to be noticed, it’s the person that demonstrates the values and ethics of the organization and lives the purpose, who will inspire people to follow them"
A Career Hackers' Classic, read the full post here.
Melissa Raffoni is CEO of The Raffoni Group, a boutique professional services firm that helps CEOs realize their highest ambitions while improving the quality of their personal and professional lives. She is recognized for her thought leadership in the areas of CEO effectiveness, strategy, execution, leadership, and organizational alignment.
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