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How to position yourself for a promotion




The job market is heating up and demand is high. Are you preparing for the future? If you have the ambition to rise 
to the top, then you need to take proactive steps to stand out from the crowd and take charge of your future.

The first step is identifying your goals. Are you happy in your current career and sector? Does the type of job that 
you do or the industry that you work in have strong projections for the future, or is it vulnerable to outsourcing and 
automation? What are the available options to move forward from where you are now, and do they suit your needs, 
interests and capabilities?

Take the time to do some research and set a target that’s right for you. You might want to look into 
the top 5 business management degree jobs or read up on sectors that are poised for growth. Business 
management jobs usually take a combination of experience and appropriate educational credentials and 
cover a wide range of roles, so you’ll want to establish a list of strong possibilities, and then narrow it down
 to something that’s a good fit for you.

If you’re more of a generalist and interested in having the flexibility to move between industries as you advance, 
then you might want to focus on a role such as an Administrative Services Manager. If you have a strong 
background in a production environment, then you might do better as an Operations Manager or Industrial 
Production Manager. If you already have some training in a very specific industry such as HR, finance or health 
care, then you’ll need to choose whether you want to move towards a management role using your existing 
experience, or if you’d be happier moving to a different sector entirely.

Once you’ve identified your target, it’s important to make your goals known. Signal your interest in moving up to 
those around you, such as supervisors, leadership, HR, colleagues and social contacts. This makes you more 
likely to be considered for opportunities as they come up.

Take proactive steps to prepare yourself for a promotion. Depending on your current situation and goals, there may 
be some very clear requirements that you need to achieve. You might need to get more education such as an 
MBA or a professional designation.

Talk to your current employer about learning opportunities and training funding if appropriate (but only if you plan to 
move up in place). These could include job shadowing, conferences, independent learning (by reading books, 
listening to podcasts or studying online), workshops, and attending user groups or professional organization 
meetings. You should also look for ways to get direct experience on the job and volunteer to do things that will 
improve your application for promotion or resume.

The key to positioning yourself for a promotion is to set clear goals; identify the skills, experience, and credentials 
that will qualify you for your goal job; and communicate your interest to your network well in advance of any actual 
application. Don’t wait for a promotion to fall in your lap – go after it with a plan and proactive steps.

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