Professionals who have been successful in accelerating their career trajectories often report the value of identifying and enrolling senior-level sponsorship to open doors or otherwise support these efforts. However, before you can expect a leader in the organization to sponsor or mentor you, you’ll have to get them to notice you in the first place. Below are strategies on how to get noticed at work.
Take on projects that no one else wants: In every organization there is an ongoing list of projects that are without current sponsors. Seek out and sign up for the one that takes best advantage of your skills and interests, or the one that seems to be of most importance to a senior leader.
Uncover the community service organizations/initiatives that your leaders are passionate about – and get involved: If a key executive cares deeply about the United Way, for example, volunteer to spearhead the annual fundraising campaign within the organization. Along the way, involve colleagues and peers from other departments to get additional exposure across company silos.
Attend company events – especially those attended by leadership team members: While there, introduce yourself and talk with senior level executives. Let them know the kinds of projects you are working on and ask them questions about the initiatives they are involved in. And, if an opportunity arises which makes sense, volunteer to help out.
Learn – and then become the subject matter expert on – something new: Read professional journals, attend industry conferences, and show up at professional association meetings to learn about the newest trends that are shaping the industry. Whether learning a new technology or acquiring a new skill, position yourself as the go-to person on the topic. Consider hosting a lunch-and-learn, conducting a webinar, or finding other ways to advertise your newfound knowledge across the organization.
Speak up at meetings: Many of us spend hours in meetings with our colleagues, typically lamenting over the time lost. Rather than focusing on the ‘wasted time’ that could be used doing ‘productive work’, make an effort to get fully engaged in the meeting/topic, ask questions, offer alternative solutions, and volunteer to take on assignments.
Be helpful: Offer to mentor a new recruit, share a new skill with a colleague, or coordinate the next off-site meeting. Make the next pot of coffee, clean up the kitchen, and refill the photocopier tray. Water the plants, lock up the office, or straighten up the conference room. Organize the birthday card signing, carry the FedEx box down to the mail room, or open up the office early on Monday.
Trying a few of the above suggestions will get you noticed at work. Please share strategies you have used to get noticed at work.Filed under Career, career management | Comment (1)