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Self-Promotion in the Workplace

I was speaking to a colleague of mine, whose conversations I always enjoy. We were discussing organizational cultures and some of the challenges we both encountered on our own journey to professional accomplishments and success as we pondered the question? Is it safe to self-promote at work?


The story that I shared with my colleague was from my younger years, when I declared I aspired to become a Chief Nursing Officer, the highest level of appointment in my career trajectory. I worked hard at making my division the best it could be, took more continuing education credits and ran large scale projects to prepare for that ultimate career goal. However, what I found was my current CNO was skeptical of me due to her own insecurities of her skill set and not wanting others to excel if it meant becoming an equal to her someday. Life was made rather difficult, I must say. (But I’ll share that story at later time!).


Despite my personal experience with self-promotion, I still feel that is highly valued to self-promote your skill set in your current organization. In fact, it is a very much needed skill to master if you are truly focused on wanting that next career move.


How to Self-Promote the Safe Way

  1. Articulate your career goals and objectives clearly at your annual performance appraisal. This is safe time, if with the right manager and organization that you can tout off your accomplishments and aspirations.

  2. Know your boss’s goals and objectives and be genuine that you want him/her to succeed and you are willing to their success.

  3. Ask for feedback from your current leader. Show that you are working on managing perceptions, particularly when you have those blind spots that keep lurking.

  4. Review your current competencies and assess any gaps you may have to attain a higher position. For example, you have proven to be a great project manager, but do you know how to manage a large department budget?

  5. Close those skill gaps by asking for mentorship or asked to be assigned a big project that you are passionate about.

  6. Be humble and show that you are interested in mentorship. Ask questions to show your interest in learning something new.

  7. Mentor others and share your expertise and always give recognition where recognition is due!

  8. Lastly, if these tactics do not work within your current organizational culture, know when to exit. Other organizations will value you and your expertise.

Are you thinking about your next career path? Are you stuck in your current department/organization? Then you have come to the right place. Get in touch and I would love to help you SOAR to new career accomplishments.

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