The rules seemed so much easier back at the office. Face time with the boss seemed more meaningful than FaceTime with the boss. For anyone naturally charming or charismatic, getting noticed meant asking your boss about a golf game or complimenting a new pair of shoes.
It’s different now. Casual conversation and even feckless flattery has all but disappeared. The road to success is paved with hard work and inflexible metrics. Interestingly, the new normal favors introverts, people who draw energy from focused solitude rather than the back slapping camaraderie of open-offices. While introverts often feel exhausted after extended human interactions, extroverts are energized. Since studies suggest that more people are extroverts, that means plenty of folks feel rudderless in isolation. Worse, the in-office playbook is gone. What you do matters far more than what you say or how you look. Showing up early and catching your boss’s attention is less of an option as well. So what are some good ways to get a promotion at work during lockdown?
Trust the Numbers
Remember, just about everything you do can be expressed quantitatively. So start noting metrics like social media engagement or completed sales calls. Craft a chart or a bullet point list that reflects your day-to-day or weekly accomplishments. It’s important to be more organized when you are working from home because it’s far easier to lose track of what you want to get done.
Don’t waste your supervisor’s time with endless missives. Instead, carefully craft emails that highlight your achievements. As one salesperson told the BBC, “If you are working from home, then when you email your boss you cannot be just to the point, instead you have to express your wider knowledge… when you get an email from them, you have to really study the tone, and it is the same for Zoom calls. If you work from home, and want to get promoted, you have a fight on your hands. And much more so if some of your colleagues are still going into the office.”
Make sure your boss knows about your success but don’t be afraid to bring up challenges as well. There’s a fine line between complaining and informing; learn where that is. Remember, your boss likely watched you struggle when your work had witnesses. So be honest not just about the speed bumps but about how you drove over them.
Use Video Chat Wisely
If you’re not regulating interacting via video, then you may want to schedule once a week check-ins. Psychologically seeing you regularly can really impact how often your boss thinks of you –– and the more frequent, positive thoughts they have the more likely you are to be promoted. That’s why experts recommend you turn on the video function. Keep your attire clean and professional during these sessions with your background either tidy or blurred. It’s a good idea to jot down some notes beforehand. That way you’ll be able to shine when you’re speaking. And do make a point of speaking up, offering not just your achievements but asking well-considered questions about your boss’s expectations.
The old adage really applies here. You won’t get what you don’t ask for. So make it clear why you deserve a promotion. Include how much your remote work has required increased focus and attention to detail –– abilities every company now desires. Remember, becoming adept at remote work has given you a valuable skill –– one you might never have expected to have. So be clear about your expectations and don’t be afraid to ask for what you deserve.
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