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Are you really
promotion material?

Fill in this short survey to find out:

  • 1. Have you requested a promotion in the last year?
  • 2. Have you ever been rejected for a promotion?
  • 3. Have you ever been offered a promotion?
  • 4. Has a co-worker at the same level ever been promoted instead of you?
  • 5. Has there ever been a position you applied for and didn’t get?
  • 6. Are you hesitant about asking for a promotion for fear of your boss’s response?
  • 7. Have you ever left an organization because you were passed up for promotion there?
  • 8. Do you know if your work environment values you and your work?
  • 9. Do you think that you deserve a promotion?
  • 10. Do you promote your work and yourself at work?
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** Please answer all questions **

Why managerial talents can KILL the career goals of a manager

 

Yes, you read this correctly. Those great talents that have served you so well to get you this far can actually kill the career goals of a manager and sabotage your path to the corner office. I’ll explain.

 

Let’s say that after you’ve lead your team in sales for three years, your company promoted you to area sales manager. Obviously, this was based on your ability to sell - a perfect fit. As area sales manager, you continued to hone in on and perfect your sales skills, even breaking records every quarter. You spent every waking hour becoming better and better. You’re were on the fast track to fulfilling the career goals of a manager, right? WRONG.

 

In fact, you were far from qualified for a senior position because you’d been spending too much time developing your talent as a sales manager  - instead of learning essential skills needed for a senior position.

 

To avoid this scenario in your career, here’s a list of essential steps that you need to take (yes, even at the cost of further work on your current talents):

 

1.    Explore the operational/logistical side of your job. For example, where do key supplies come from? What are the delivery schedules of finished products? You’ll demonstrate to senior management that you are developing a comprehensive picture of how your company works.

 

2.    Understand the numbers. Are you sure that your key clients are bringing profit to your company? How much does that extra sales person cost? What are some cost-cutting measures that have been implemented in other departments? You’ll demonstrate your understanding of the company’s bottom line.

 

3.    Learn how to train others to develop the talents you have. You’ll find yourself recognized as a manager who understands the importance of human capital in an organization.

 

4.    If you’re targeting a certain position, actively research the competencies required and learn them - even on your own time and dime. The added value you bring will speak for you.

 

How do you know if you’re doing a good job at all of this? Managers from other departments will want to hear what you have to say on a variety of subjects. And you’ll start getting invites to meetings in other departments - a tell-tale sign that you’ve become senior management material.

 

And always remember:

 

Great managers are made. Not born.

 

 

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The ONLY secret weapon you’ll need to get promoted

 

Of course you’re motivated. And that’s a great thing for your journey to the corner office. But, as you probably know, most people’s journeys don’t end up as planned. What’s the reason?

 

It’s actually quite simple.  It’s the difference between your motivation and the amount of your perseverance. Motivation gets you started, but it’s the amount of perseverance that does the hard part. And that’s your secret weapon.

 

The amount of perseverance you have determines how well you’ll deal with all of the “bumps in the road” along the way. It will pull you out of the mud when you doubt your abilities or question why you ever decided to take on this challenge. It will keep you going when you’re tired and just want a “rest stop.” And it will keep you on track, not allowing you to change course in order to make the journey easier. In short, the right amount of perseverance will make sure that you actually complete your journey - never giving up.

 

And keep this in mind - it’s no harder to deal with setbacks along the way than it is to deal with giving up on your dreams.

 

Below are six pairs of statements. Check the statement that best describes your attitude.

 

1.

a.      I know that I’ll achieve my dream job one day.

b.      I will definitely achieve my dream job one day.

 

2.

a.      The costs of achieving a goal should be considered.

b.      The end always justifies the means.

 

3.

a.      When things get tough, I regroup and start anew if required.

b.      I always tough things out.

 

4.

a.      Some prices are too heavy to pay.

b.      Success is priceless.

 

5.

a.      If the high road is closed, I’ll re-think my journey.

b.      If the high road is closed, I’ll take the low road.

 

6.

a.      I always proceed with caution.

b.      Nothing can stop me.

 

Now tally your a answers and b answers separately. The more b answers there are, the more perseverance you have.

 

If you’ve got a good amount of perseverance, now is the time to harness it and start actively managing your career. But if you feel as if you might be lacking in the perseverance department, this is the time to start building it up.

 

 

And always remember:

 

Great managers are made. Not born.

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Great managers are made. Not born.

 

We all start off our career with great aspirations and dreams.

 

But for a shocking 70% of us, these dreams will never come true.

 

No promotions. No influence. No status. No executive paycheck.

 

Many people think that career success is for the “privileged few” - those who graduated at the top of their class from Ivy League schools, or who somehow started their career off with a bang, or who just got a lucky break.

 

But after 35 years of research, I can assure you that none of these privileges contribute to career success.

 

What does count, though, is active career management.

 

In fact, if you don’t work towards landing your first promotion within the first five years of your career, your chances for further promotion could be reduced.

 

This doesn’t mean that you’ll never be promoted. What it does mean, though, is that it is never too early to manage the next step in your career.

 

And always remember:

 

Great managers are made. Not born.

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“Managing my own career”

Lisa had always been a go-getter when it came to climbing the corporate ladder. Eyeing her next promotion, she turned to her boss for guidance.

 

Hurdle

I was always taught to manage my own career - to be proactive -  not to wait around for some big boss to recognize me and hand me an opportunity on a silver platter - even though this was only my first managerial job. With this thought in mind, I went into a meeting with my direct supervisor, who had asked me for a quarterly budget update. After our discussion of this quarter’s numbers, I asked if she had a few more minutes to talk. She agreed and I told her that I admired her very much for her own climb up the corporate ladder and wanted to know about other factors affecting career development. She thanked me for the compliment and said that it’s important to always take charge of things, stay engaged with the company’s overall strategy, and to keep developing my curiosity. Then she urged me to get in touch with Etika, whom she promised would help me work towards tempting career advancement. My boss knew what she was talking about, so I took down Etika’s number.

 

As I left my supervisor’s office, I thought that maybe it might be a little too premature to try to fast track my career. Could this be a mistake? Perhaps I needed more experience in my current role.

 

That night, I went out with some friends for after work drinks. One of my colleagues introduced me to someone who said that he had just been to see Etika and that things looked very good. I knew that this person and I were at the same managerial level, so I thought to myself that it probably is a good time in my career to meet with Etika. After all, I always did see myself as proactive when it came to my career.

 

Encounter with Etika

When I finished climbing the stairs to Etika’s office, I was greeted with the famous mirrors that I had heard and read about. I knew that each mirror provided a slightly different reflection of me and that I should take into account that I am perceived differently by the people around me at work.

 

A door opened and Etika appeared, greeting me warmly. She began to ask me about my impression of the mirrors and I told her that I already had heard and read about the story behind them. She smiled and asked me what the mirrors meant to me. I told her that the experience of seeing so many different versions of myself was thought-provoking - but I didn’t really know where to go on from there. I started to tell Etika why I had come but then had trouble in that department as well.

 

I explained to her that I didn’t have a specific issue that I was grappling with - much like many of the people I’d heard and read about who felt “stuck” in their career. She then asked me what, in any case, brought me to see her. I still wasn’t able to put my finger on anything specific, but one thing was certain: I wanted to get to the corner office as quickly as possible. Etika responded that this was an excellent reason for us to meet.

 

We sat down and Etika asked me about myself, my management style - it’s good and not-so-good points. She listened intently without interruption. Then, she sat me down next to a computer and had me fill out a questionnaire. My answers would not only help identify my dominant management style but also to what degree this style might be preventing my potential from developing - something that would be important for getting to that corner office.

 

The results showed that my dominant style is what’s known as Producer, which is actually very advantageous when it comes to getting things done as quickly and as effectively as possible. However, as I would grow and develop in the company, being just a Producer could hinder my ability to work with larger teams in bringing in results. This could be a real career-stopper and it was important for me to develop my potential management style as well.

 

I asked Etika if she thought that it was important for me to begin this change now - after all, I had a long career ahead of me and maybe working with her would distract me from my present duties. She told me that it was up to me. We could either continue with the process now or I could go back to my job and give her a call when I was ready.

 

I genuinely wasn’t sure what to do. Etika said that we could possibly begin slowly. The advantage was that it would be easier to make the changes because I was just at the beginning of my career and my management style wasn’t quite “set in cement” as it might be with more senior managers. I took a few days to think about it and then came back to Etika to get down to work.

 

Road to success

About nine months into the process, my immediate supervisor called me in for a meeting. I was sure that she wanted to review the quarterly budget. Instead, she told me that she and some of the other managers had noticed a change in me. They saw how well I was managing team members, ensuring that everyone understood their role. My boss said that this was what she’d meant by “taking charge of things”. Then, to my delight, she offered me a promotion, effective the following month.

 

Since then, three years have passed and I am the CFO of a large company, slated to take the CEO’s seat in two weeks.

 

What about you?

Have you begun your journey towards developing your career path? Hit Reply to share your stories and thoughts.

 

Remember: Great managers are made. Not born.

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Keeping your eye on your goals

Good managers like you know how to set goals and milestones for your organisation.

 

But what about your personal career goals? Do you “manage” them as you do your organization’s goals?

 

And here’s another question: have ever used a GANTT chart (or other project management tool) to manage your career? Your career, after all, is probably one of the most important projects in your life!

 

Sadly, in over 35 years of working with talented managers, I have never met a single one who has managed their own career.

 

There are probably many reasons for this, but I want to make sure that you understand one thing: just because you’re talented, don’t expect your dreams to chase you. You must do the chasing.

 

Unfortunately, 70% of managers fail to realize this. What about the other 30? They know the secret. They manage their careers like a multi-million dollar project.

 

What are the consequences of failing to manage your career? Lots of wasted energy on unfocused activities. Why not use that fuel to pave your way to the corner office?

 

Let’s get started now. Click here to receive my Great Managers are Made collection, a series of nine short posts that will put you on the right track towards results-oriented career management.

 

And always remember:

 

Great managers are made. Not born.

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Thank you!

I’m looking forward to sharing "Time for Promotion?" with you.

I am sure that you’ll enjoy finding out whether you are ready to take that next big step.

As an added bonus, you’ll also begin receiving updates on achieving your next promotion.

 

Enjoy!

 

Best wishes

Etika

 

P.S. If you’re not interested in a promotion right now, just click the unsubscribe button when you receive your first update...and we’ll meet again!

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“Even though I’d been recognized for my achievements, I was still passed up for a promotion”

This week, I’d like to share the story of John, a super successful sales manager, who couldn’t understand what he was doing wrong.

 

Hurdle

I had just come out of my last performance review pretty down and out. My boss couldn’t stop praising my achievements last quarter, especially the fact that I had met all of my sales goals. I was sure that this was going to result in her offering me a promotion. But just the opposite happened. Instead, she told me that I was not going to be up for promotion for the following year. I was flabbergasted. How could it be that I am doing such a good job yet ineligible for promotion? When I asked her this, she said that I am not quite ready for more managerial duties and that I needed to carry on in my present position for the time being. How could this possibly be? For years, everyone has been telling me that I am wise beyond my years.  None of this was making sense at all.

 

I decided to let the dust settle for the rest of the week. Over the weekend, I called one of my old college buddies and told him about the performance review. While he was just as surprised as I had been, he suggested that I get in touch with Etika. If there was anyone who could help, she could. I wasn’t sure about this. After all, it was my boss's poor judgement, not my issue.

 

Encounter with Etika

Reluctantly, I made an appointment for the middle of the following week. When I made it to the top of the stairs and entered Etika’s office, I was met with an array of mirrors - each one reflecting a slightly different image of me. Some of them were pretty funny looking. I navigated my way through a couple of more mirrors and was then greeted by Etika. After introductions, she offered me a seat and asked me what I thought about all of the mirrors. I told her that it reminded me of the house of mirrors at an amusement park. She pressed on, asking me to think about the meaning behind all of these funny images. I wasn’t sure where this was going, so she explained. She said that these reflections represent how others - especially those in charge of promoting me - might see me. She explained that it was important to identify the aspects that people see as hindering my ability to function in a more senior position. Also, it’s important to see how some of the things you see as advantages might be perceived as disadvantages to others. This last sentence got me thinking. Sometimes, I am so goal oriented that I take over projects, leaving team members in the dust, so to speak. In this way, I don’t really delegate tasks or even teach my team members how to overcome challenges. I guess that this is why I hadn’t been considered for promotion.

 

Road to success

I decided to give Etika a try. After about a year and a half of hard work, people started to see me differently, wondering how I’d made such a 180 degree change. Needless to say, I was promoted during that time and have been promoted again since then.

 

What about you?

John changed the way he thought about “success” and therefore was able to make the changes needed to modify his management style.

 

Have you ever reconsidered what it means to be successful? How has it influenced your career? 

 

Remember: Great managers are made. Not born.

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“I finally understand”

This week, we return to Rob, who realizes that discovering his dominant and potential management styles is not something he can do alone.

 

 

Hurdle

After about two months of trying to develop my potential management style, I started to understand Etika’s wry smile as I had left her after our meeting. Yes, there’s a huge difference between knowing what to do and actually doing it. As a talented manager, I was sure that the whole transformation thing would be a piece of cake, but I was dead wrong. It was time to see Etika again.

 

Encounter with Etika

After catching up on the last couple of months, I told Etika how hard it had all been. She assured me that I wasn’t the first to underestimate how difficult real change can be - illustrating with examples of the way change is portrayed in the media as something “instant”, Actually, she explained, we are all creatures of habit who avoid change - sticking instead to what we already know. But change, she continued, means saying goodbye to the familiar and venturing to the unknown. It’s very hard but of course very possible - and requires some degree of help. Reflecting on the past two months, I knew that I needed help and asked Etika how she’d be able to assist me.

 

Referring to our initial conversation, she reminded me that we’d have to work on giving more room to my potential management style, which is currently being squashed by my dominant management style. This would require learning and practicing new habits, which would make me a more well-rounded manager. While she assured me of eventual success, Etika warned me that this kind of change isn’t “instant” and would come with the usual ups and downs that are expected with change. We’d take things step by step. I wasn’t thrilled to hear about this possible roller coaster ride, but I knew that I had to give it a try.

 

Road to success

After about two years of learning how to make room for my potential management style by reducing certain aspects of my dominant management style , I was promoted to VP Marketing and in a couple of months, I’m due to be appointed CEO.

 

What about you?

Rob received the help he needed to discover his dominant and potential management styles, leading him to achievements he’d probably never imaged.

 

What about your dominant and potential management styles? 

 

Remember: Great managers are made. Not born.

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"You just need to be more effective” Is it that simple?

This week, I’d like to share the story of Rob who was having trouble reflecting on his management style until he made an important discovery.

 

Hurdle

"You just need to be more effective.” I had been hearing this sentence from my boss for over a year now. I had been vying for a promotion and had felt comfortable enough to let my boss know. Every Time I hinted at it, though, I was met with the same sentence. I finally sat down with my boss over lunch one day and asked him what he meant. He told me that by being more effective, he meant that I needed to make decisions faster, sometimes even sacrificing the full consensus of my team members. I couldn’t believe my ears. How could I disregard my valuable team members? It had been through my intensive team building efforts that had made us so cohesive, let alone developed my reputation as a well-loved manager.

 

Encounter with Etika

I had heard about Etika from a colleague and decided to make an appointment with her. After a quick chat about my frustration, Etika explained to me that every manager has what’s known as a “dominant management style” and that on one hand, this is what has led to my success so far, while on the other, it can actually squash any further potential. It was really interesting to hear all of this and it somehow gave me hope that maybe by developing my potential, I would be able to, in my boss’s words, be “more effective”.

 

I asked Etika how I can find out more about my management potential. She sat me down in front of a computer and had me fill out a questionnaire. After analyzing the results, she showed me both my dominant and potential management styles. More importantly, she remarked that my dominant management style was keeping my potential management style from developing. This all started to make a lot of sense to me and I realized that all that I had to do was to “make room” for my potential management style.  I promised Etika that I would work on this and thanked her so much for sorting things out for me. I was determined to make a significant change. Etika smiled and let out a slight chuckle. I looked at her a bit confused and she answered that there’s quite a difference between knowing that you have to do something and actually doing it. She wished me good luck and I was on my way.

 

Road to success

Rob spent the next week writing a list of ways to develop his potential. He even made a list of key websites and books that he would be sure to consult as he embarked on his journey.  

 

What about you?

Rob realized the importance of identifying his dominant and potential management styles. It’s the first step towards meaningful change.

Do you know your dominant and potential management styles? Share your stories and thoughts.

 

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