Four Ways to Accelerate Your Career
You’re a high potential employee, identified as someone who could grow into a leadership role. But, nothing is happening and you haven’t been given the opportunity to lead. What do you do? How do you accelerate your development when you’re stalled out? Instead of waiting for opportunities to open and getting discouraged, get out there and create opportunities for yourself!
1. Increase your Technical Expertise
Keep up with your technical skills. Learn what you can about your field, attend conferences, and participate in professional associations. If you’re in a highly technical area, publish an article or make a presentation, showcasing your expertise. This will lead to building your technical proficiency and establishing yourself as an expert. Continue to build your technical competencies. Being at the top of your technical game is the foundation for your professional success. Sharpen your skills!
2. Seek Leadership Development
What could help you enhance your leadership skills? Many organizations offer leadership courses, whether internally or externally. If you haven’t participated in a leadership program, ask your manager when you can enroll. Even if you aren’t yet managing people, it will be good to have an understanding of your company’s expectations for leaders and establish leadership competencies.
3. Identify a Mentor
A mentor can help you hone your technical skills, navigate organizational nuances, and advocate for you as opportunities arise. No formal mentorship program in your organization? Identify a mentor – either within your company or outside your organization, and within or outside of your industry. Mentors are typically experienced professionals who can be a sounding board for you. Mentors are available for you to lean on for advice, counsel, and knowledge. Mentors can help you network and open doors for you. A mentor can be invaluable in your professional development.
4. Invest in Coaching
Your company may be willing to invest in hiring a coach for you if you simply ask. If they have recognized you as top talent, they want to retain you rather than lose you to a competitor. In the short-term, coaching can help you apply what you are learning, preparing you for what is to come. In the long-term, coaching can help you establish yourself with effective leadership behaviors. Even if your company won’t invest in a coach for you, what’s your career development worth to you? Invest in yourself. You’re worth it!
A client recently shared with me that she would be in the exact same place where she was when she started coaching with me had it not been for setting intentional goals for the coaching engagement. She went on to say that coaching helped her see shifts in her thinking and behaviors, which was reinforcing. Coaching may accelerate your readiness for promotion, allowing you to fast-track.
Coaching complements expanding technical expertise, reinforces what is learned in leadership training, and strengthens participation in mentorship programs. A study featured in Public Personnel Management Journal reports that managers who underwent a managerial training program showed an increased productivity of 22.4%. However, a second group was provided coaching following the training program, and their productivity increased by 88%. 88%!
Let’s discuss how I can help you accelerate your development. I coach new leaders as they begin their leadership journey. As your coach, I am a trusted partner who is a champion for you, and I will also hold up a mirror for you. I will support you as you reach for, and ultimately achieve, your goals. Do you need a coach or know someone that does? Share this article and call me!