Do you dread the notion of touting your own accomplishments? Do you think self-promotion smacks of showing off? If so, you may be a manager who is missing out on the upside of visibility.
Self-promotion is increasingly important for career success. But it also offers benefits to your group and the organization, according to Gina Hernez-Broome, co-author of “Selling Yourself Without Selling Out.” Self-promotion allows you to create opportunities for your direct reports, to keep your boss informed and to foster pride in the work of your group.
To improve your ability to promote yourself, Hernez-Broome says to quit thinking of it as a necessary evil. She recommends nine (9) ways to make it part of your routine.
No. 1: Be honest and open. Self-promotion isn’t about stating false or exaggerated information. It’s about being genuine and frank about your work and your efforts.
No. 2: Acknowledge the positive. In your routine discussions and meetings, be sure to talk about successes. Avoid focusing ONLY on struggles or frustrations.
No. 3: Don’t totally ignore trouble spots. Be realistic about challenges and problem areas. Otherwise your credibility will suffer.
No. 4: Learn to summarize your successes. People are too busy to listen to all that you do.
No. 5: Be proactive. Ask for assignments, and don’t wait for someone to hand you good opportunities to shine.
No. 6: Don’t block information. The more you release information instead of hoarding it, the more powerful it – and you – will become.
No. 7: Reach out. Invite people from other areas of the business to sit in on a meeting to give a fresh perspective. Ask a more seasoned or senior person for their insight or opinion. Then you’ll have a good reason to keep that person informed of the result.
No. 8: Tout the team. Showcasing the accomplishments of your team is one of the most comfortable ways to gain visibility, to extend your network and to build relationships. Recognize the team’s role in your successes and give praise and credit to specific individuals for good work.
No. 9: Step into the spotlight. Take on challenging work assignments and high visibility projects. Seek opportunities to interact with senior management in situations that showcase your strengths.
By following these recommendations, you’ll not only reap benefits for yourself, but for your team and organization as well.