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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 **

How can executive coaches establish their unique niche?

With so many executive coaches in the market, establishing your own niche is crucial for your practice for two main reasons: 


1. It allows you to build your own brand, thus becoming the go-to executive coach for specific issues and paving your corporate development career path.

2. It helps your clients understand exactly what they can expect from working with you, thus increasing chances of success.


In a bid to grow quickly, many coaches end up accepting a wide variety of clients - but with varying degrees of success. How successful you are with specific clients  should be a first indication of the types of clients that you should focus on along your corporate development career path. Don’t be a  “hit and miss” coach, or at least limit this to your early days of practice.


Instead, you should always have one central question in mind when looking to establish a niche:  What are my roots, my beliefs? This will help solidify who you are as a coach and where you are headed.


When I started out as an executive coach, my colleagues in marketing asked me what my strategy was. I gave them a simple response: “to answer questions.” I wasn’t trying to be clever or minimalistic - these were, and still are, the roots of my desire to be an executive coach. 


A little bit about my roots. As a kid, I didn’t have it easy  - growing up at a time when different learning styles weren’t known about or recognized. As a result, I was labeled as lazy by both my teachers and my parents. I literally struggled all through school and later on in higher education. As a result, my passion has always been to help others avoid the kind of suffering I endured. And this passion was so strong that it naturally led me to my career as an executive coach, where I began helping managers avoid unnecessary suffering on their way up the career ladder.


By identifying with their hardships, I was able to teach them that they have the necessary innate potential to succeed - something that I was forced to teach myself after so many difficult years. So knowing where you’ve come from - what your roots are and how they’ve shaped your beliefs - is essential in establishing your own niche.


I highly recommend that you think deeply about this question yourself. I guarantee you’ll discover the connection between your roots, your beliefs, and who would most benefit from your help as an executive coach. Be sure to review this question periodically, especially in times of difficulty or uncertainty.

Once you are wholeheartedly connected to your roots, maintaining your niche will come naturally. You’ll stay focused on your niche, ignoring the “shiny and new” trends that can sidetrack you towards unproductive directions. Most importantly, you’ll believe in yourself as the best executive coach available for the niche you’ve dedicated yourself to.


And your dedication will pay off. Your clients will know what to expect from you, as who you are, what you offer, and how you offer it will be well-known. This will increase client satisfaction, as you will be delivering exactly what they expect. Client satisfaction will result in valuable referral business. Your clients will be your very own dedicated brand ambassadors, leading to even more growth. 


But remember that establishing your own niche isn’t just about your clients. It’s about first looking deep.


And always remember: 


Great managers are made. Not born.

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Should senior level managers consult with leadership coaches?

When I welcomed Mark, the CEO of a very successful hi-tech company into my office, I could see that he was less than enthusiastic to see me. 


As he sat down, he told me that he had come to me because his good friend Tim, another top hi-tech CEO, had hounded him so much that he finally agreed. I smiled to Mark and told him that Tim had pleaded with me as well to squeeze him in, as Mark was what he described as an urgent case. 


But after 35 years of practice, this scenario wasn’t new to me. Most successful CEOs are pretty sure they don’t have much to learn from leadership coaches like me - especially professional development goals for managers. 


“Well, Mark, now that we’ve both kept our promises to Tim, we can end things now and part as friends,” I said. I had decided to put the ball in Mark’s court.


Mark was completely taken off guard and even looked embarrassed. We remained silent for a few moments and then he began to speak.
“It’s not just a saying that it’s lonely at the top,” he uttered. 


“Everything is great when the company is running well. My employees are keen to share the credit for our successes, and of course, I’m more than happy to do so. But when things go wrong, it gets very cold and lonely,” he admitted. 


Mark told me that he had confided in Tim about a week ago, when he’d returned from a board meeting, completely disillusioned. His company had turned out very good quarterly results, yet the board had hoped for larger growth. 


Mark had explained that because of recent trade conflicts, it was taking longer than expected to produce certain components in Asia. As a result, there had been a delay in sales. 


“But the board wouldn’t accept this explanation,” he upsettingly said. 

“They were only interested in seeing a steeper growth graph.”


He continued: “And with all due respect, Etika, I’m really not sure what this has to do with you or how you can help...unless you can recommend some other factories.”


I told Mark that in terms of factories, he’d have to consult with someone else, but regarding his bigger question, every CEO needs and should engage in leadership coaching to promote professional development goals for managers like himself. 

“Mark, let me ask you a question. In the last month or so, how many times have you made a tough decision based on your experience, even your gut feelings?” I asked.


Mark gave a wry smile and answered, “Countless times, of course. That’s what’s expected of me - to use both my experience and intuition. That’s why things generally run pretty smoothly.”


“No doubt in my mind, Mark,” I replied. “By the way, do you have any idea what percentage of our decisions comes from habit versus actual processing,” I asked.

Mark shook his head.


“Research shows that about 40% of our daily decisions are automatic, while we only really think through the other 60%,” I said.

“Honestly, I didn’t know that,” Mark replied with interest. “Is this good or bad? Should I be doing something else?” he asked.


“Great question,” I said. “The good part of acting automatically 40% of the time is that it allows us to decide things quickly, thus increasing efficiency and saving us time,” I answered. 


“I see,” said Mark.


But then I continued: “The downside is that sometimes we react inappropriately to certain situations we think we’ve seen before.


As experienced managers, we’re expected to think quickly on our feet. This sometimes comes at the expense of taking the time to analyze the situation and think things through.”

“Right, I can relate to that,” Mark admitted. “I’ve shot from the hip a few times - regretting it later.”

“Exactly,” I said with a smile. “Of course, automatic reactions are great for efficiency, but sometimes they need to be restrained. Such restraint allows you to stop and consider if your instincts should be acted upon for a particular situation. This is similar to counting to ten before reacting when you’re angry.”


“I see what you mean,” Mark said.


“And once you do learn to stop and think, you’ll find that you’ll actually develop and add new and improved automatic reactions to your repertoire, rather than sort of recycling yourself” I added.   


“Right,” Mark said interestingly.


“As I see things, this is the secret to real growth in managers...the ability to evolve even at the most senior levels,” I commented. “And this is also the place where many CEOs like yourself are lacking, which leads to the “lonely at the top” feeling you mentioned earlier,” I added.


“That makes some sense,” Mark said.


“But you have to want to grow, Mark, and that means regularly meeting with a leadership coach,” I asserted. 


Inside, I wasn’t sure whether Mark was convinced. I told him that our time was up and that if he wanted guidance in growing even further, I would be happy to take him on. 


Mark was a bit surprised by my abrupt ending, but again, I felt that putting the ball back in his court was the right thing to do.


Based on my experience, CEOs either exhaust themselves out and find another career or carry on trying to grow. It’ll be interesting to see what Mark decides to do.


 And always remember: 


Great managers are made. Not born.. 

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How do I know if my coaching practice is successful?

This is probably one of the most asked questions among professional coaches.

I’ll tell you right away that there’s really no clear answer regarding how to measure success at work in our industry. And the reason is that it leads to so many other important questions: What kinds of metrics should I use? How do you define success? Who decides how to measure success at work? When should I measure?

I think you see how complicated such a simple question can become. But as professionals striving to improve, it’s still important to at least attempt at answering it - so that you know where you stand in the market. 


To help, I’ll share with you four metrics I’ve developed with my coaches over the years:


- Number of clients who want to work with you

- Your hourly rate

- Client satisfaction surveys from your corporate customers

- How selective you can be when taking on new business


Naturally, this is not an exhaustive list and you might not agree with some of the items. Again, I am sharing the big four that have proven over the years to be a pretty good indicator of a successful coaching practice.


In addition to these metrics, it’s important to listen to your clients. For example, if you often hear the following, your practice is probably quite healthy:


“I’ve heard a lot about you.”

“You really helped my friend.”

“You were warmly recommended.”


So you’re probably thinking: Why do I need the other metrics if my client has already told me how good I am? 

It’s very simple. Your client can shower you with a lot of praise, but if they aren’t active partners in their journey, then it’s going to reflect poorly on your practice as a whole. 


This brings me to another issue, which is related to #4 above. If, at any stage during intake or working with your client, you feel that your client isn’t cooperating, you need to bring this up as swiftly as possible. 


There’s nothing worse in a coach-client relationship than a sinking ship on which you’re both aboard. Such a situation will leave your client frustrated and your coaching practice with a bad name.


So obviously, the best thing to do is to filter out any potential sinking ship scenarios during the intake process.

Here’s how to do it:


1.    Understand your client’s expectations and consider whether they are indeed attainable.


2.    Define the requirements for reaching the client’s goals (e.g., time, resources).


3.    Explain the coaching process as realistically as possible, emphasizing that there’s no such thing as a “magic pill” -  any meaningful change is going to take time and patience.


4.    Ensure that the client is adequately motivated to do what needs to be done.


If you’re satisfied with this process, you have the makings of a productive coach-client relationship.


In a world that promises just about anything you can think of instantly - where everyone is chasing the newest and the shiniest - we must remain professional. Maintaining an honest relationship with your clients is the true secret to running a successful coaching practice.


And always remember: 

Great managers are made. Not born.

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No executive coach is an island

Several years into my career, when I was already sought after by managers from many of the top companies in the industry, I began to realize that success has a price - even given the executive coaching rates I was being paid. As my practice increased, so did the variety of critical incidents and dilemmas I had to help my clients navigate. Dedicated to provide my clients with the best coaching possible, I knew that I myself needed guidance. There’s the old expression “The shoemaker’s children go barefoot.” Well, at the time, I was the shoemaker herself going barefoot.


How many of you have felt “barefoot” - mired in a dilemma, an unanswered question, uncertainty - yearning for guidance? And the irony is that experts, such as ourselves, are generally hesitant to consult with others professionally. After all, if we’re the experts, why do we need help? And if we do, maybe we’re not as professional as we thought.


Luckily, when I realized that I needed help, I swallowed my pride and called Sandra, a well-respected colleague. When I told Sandra that I wanted her to be my mentor, she thought I was kidding.


 “You’re one of the top executive coaches I know with some of the highest executive coaching rates. What could I possibly do to help you?” she responded.

I told her, “Thanks so much for the compliment, Sandra, but because I intend to remain professional, I know that I need a mentor.”

“Yes, I see what you mean, Etika. I myself did call you on several occasions to get your take on some of my own sessions with clients,” she recalled.

“And you were pleased to get a fresh perspective, right?” I’d convinced her.

“I tell you what,” I said. “Let’s keep this informal. When I feel I need a sounding board or a different way of tackling an issue, I’ll call you. If you can speak, great. If not, we’ll set a phone appointment for when it’s convenient for you. A deal?”

Sandra answered, “A deal. But as long as I can do the same!”


We had made a pact to keep each other as professional as possible. 

As the years passed, other executive coaches joined our little group, where we created a space to discuss our clients, strategies, and challenges. And there’s no doubt that this group prevented me from becoming worn out both emotionally and physically. I would even go as far as to say that in our profession, tapping into different perspectives is not a luxury - it’s a must.
With social media today, communicating with other executive coaches is as easy as opening Facebook and joining a group. This is an excellent way to gain different perspectives and share dilemmas. 


However, if you want to ensure you’re developing, it’s important to go beyond Facebook groups. For example, there are well-researched online courses developed by professionals that can help expand your horizons and thus your practice. With so much variety, it’s important that you choose which one fits your niche and the way you prefer to work. 


And if you don’t yet have a well-defined niche, then a good online course is a very effective way to help you specialize in some very lucrative areas. 


Whichever you choose, an expert around the corner or the empowerment of online learning, no executive coach is an island. When you finally embrace this, it will work for you and lead you to success.


And always remember: 

Great managers are made. Not born.

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Cookie-cutter Solutions Don't Work

Climbing the stairs up to Etika’s office, Melanie was trying to figure out why a successful marketing manager like herself needed coaching. Her results so far in her career had been spectacular. She thought, “Am I not a dream player? Why am I being sent to coaching - and why is my boss hinting that my career depends on it?”


When her boss had mentioned coaching in the past, she used to laugh to herself, thinking he couldn’t be serious. Melanie wasn’t about to waste valuable time sitting around with a coach who didn’t understand her job. She did, though, take her boss seriously. One Friday, she stopped by a local bookstore to pick up a few best sellers in career advancement solutions. “After all, these multi-million dollar authors must know a thing or two,” she reasoned. “All I need to do is emulate their successful behavior.”


Rushing home, Melanie spent the weekend absorbing book after book, followed by binge listening to dozens of podcast episodes of various career advancement solutions. She meticulously noted the qualities and behaviors of successful managers. Starting the following Monday, she tried her best to implement everything she’d learned. She was going to make this work.


But surprisingly, Melanie’s manager felt differently. He acknowledged her recent, concerted effort to improve, but insisted that without coaching, Melanie would have no future. 


So here she was, about to meet her coach for the first time. Confused, Melanie finally reached the top of the stairs and knocked on the door to Etika’s office. The door opened and Etika warmly greeted Melanie, offering her a seat. After a bit of small talk, Melanie proudly told Etika about all of the self-learning she had been engaged with recently. 


She reached in her bag and took out a handwritten list of 100 habits of the world’s top managers that she had compiled over the last month. And she told Etika that she’d been making every effort to follow this list to the letter. 


However, Melanie disappointingly admitted that her boss had not seen any improvement in her performance.

Etika, of course, wasn’t surprised. She’d coached many “Melanies” during her four decade career - very ambitious managers looking for the “magic formula” for success.


Etika explained to Melanie that it’s nearly impossible to assume someone else’s habits in a bid to improve. “Unfortunately,” Etika lamented, “This is exactly what many management books and podcasts ask us to do.” 

Melanie was confused. “But if you don’t emulate a successful role model, how can you improve?” she argued. 

“By NOT emulating,” Etika emphasized. “Instead, you need to concentrate on minimizing the particular habits that are keeping you, personally, from growing, so that you can nurture your potential.”

“Habits? Potential?” Melanie was confused.


Etika gave her the example of a manager who prioritizes a company’s procedures over the bottom line. While sticking to procedures might be important, if it lead to a loss in the company’s income, then the procedures should be changed. 

But a manager who is procedure-oriented might not realize this, especially if they haven’t let their innate sense of prioritizing the bottom line develop. 

By concentrating on procedures, they’ve been neglecting other ways of thinking that are important for becoming a well-rounded manager. And without “giving room” to alternative ways, managers remain stuck.

“Melanie, I don’t know which of your hidden habits haven’t had a chance to develop, but what I do know is that they’re inside you, ready to be grown and nurtured,” Etika explained. “And no cookie-cutter management guide is going to help you with that,” she continued.


Melanie looked down to consider Etika’s words and then faced her, responding, “OK, Etika, you’ve convinced me to part with my checklist. I’m ready to discover my potential. Let’s get started.”


How can you discover your innate potential? How will doing so help increase your performance?


And always remember: 

Great managers are made. Not born.

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Passed up for Promotion Twice!

“This can’t be happening again,” Jane thought to herself as she closed the door on her way out of her boss’s office, trying to hold back her tears. She had just been rejected for the VP Finance position she thought she’d finally had in the bag. And, after all, wasn’t this the natural corporate development career path?


What really upset Jane was that she had applied for this position with the same result just a year ago, when the company unwisely took on an outside hire who ended up never fitting in. Jane was convinced that this time around, her boss would realize that she, who had “grown up” in the company, would be the best fit. 


Instead of planning to celebrate a promotion, she shuffled back to her office in a near state of shock - so much for corporate development career path.


When she closed the door behind her, she suddenly had a flashback of discussing her frustrations with Rick, her close friend and co-worker, the last time she was rejected. She had complained to Rick that someone from the outside had gotten the job and told him to mark her words that the company would be sorry they hadn’t hired her. 


During her complaining, Rick had mentioned that she might want to get some coaching to better prepare her for her next opportunity. He had even brought up the name of a veteran career and leadership coach he’d heard great things about. Convinced that being passed up for the promotion had nothing to do with her qualifications and abilities, she had scuffed off Rick’s advice. 


Reflecting on this now, she realized that Rick might’ve been right. “Now, what was the name of that coach?” she thought.   

Encounter with Etika

At about 7 pm the following evening, Jane walked up the stairs leading to my office. When she entered the office, she was slightly taken aback - suddenly finding herself surrounded by what seemed like dozens of mirrors - just like at a house of mirrors. 


Trying to find her way to let me know that she had arrived, Jane peered into one mirror, then another, and so on, realizing that each mirror revealed a slightly different image of herself. When she managed to reach me, Jane asked about the strange entrance to my office. 


Rather than answering Jane straight away, I asked her to think about the reason for the mirrors. Jane said that she wasn’t sure, so I helped by asking her why each mirror reflects a slightly different image. Jane, still upset from being turned down from her promotion, was distracted and clueless. 


Patiently, I told her to compare these mirrors to all of the people whom she works with - colleagues, subordinates, and bosses. As each mirror sees Jane differently, so do each of those at work.  Moreover, they see Jane differently from the way she sees herself. 


Jane began to show interest in what I had to say, but then became anxious: “If everyone sees me differently, then how in the world can I influence how I’m perceived? 


I smiled, as I knew that Jane had just begun an important process. I explained to Jane that if we can somehow acquire the ability to see us as others do, then we know what needs to be worked on.


“After all, we don’t promote ourselves at work, do we”? 

“Our climb up the career ladder is dependent on how others view us”.  


Jane pondered what I said, realizing that the first promotion she’d missed had nothing to do with the boss’s bad decision making. It was her “reflection” that needed help. 


“So where do we go from here?” Jane asked. 


“We need to find out what are called the ‘dominant behaviors’ you have that might be holding you back from reaching your potential. This will require an analysis of almost every aspect of your professional behavior. Once we know which dominant behaviors to ‘put on hold,’ you’ll find yourself growing your potential and eventually ready for promotion.”


This was a lot to take in for Jane, but she was ready to begin the journey... 


What dominant habits are holding you back from promotion?


What kinds of innate potential habits do you have that you might not be developing? 


And always remember: 

Great managers are made. Not born.

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Is Leaving Your Best Option for a Promotion?

If you’ve ever been rejected for a promotion you will understand that it is a difficult thing to process. Regardless of the reasons given you are going to go through a whole raft of emotions, and one idea that will begin to germinate in your mind is whether you should leave.

While assessing the factors affecting career development it is important that you don’t react too quickly. Within a few days or perhaps weeks of not getting the promotion you may certainly feel like storming out and never returning. This is never a good idea.

I’m not saying that you shouldn’t plan on leaving if you have weighed up your options properly. What I am saying is that you shouldn’t leave as a knee-jerk, emotional response. Decisions based on emotions are should never be included in the factors affecting career development.


Do You Really Fit In?

You may have been with this company for a number of years, but in truth you’ve never really fitted in. Sure, you are great at your job because you meet your sales targets, and you are a supportive and admired leader of your team. However, there may be other factors your company are interested in which they hold highly when considering anyone for promotion.

Perhaps your company has a great sporting ethos, for example. Do your peers participate in weekly sporting events together like basketball or baseball? Are they keen on winning medals and championing their own sporting prowess? Regardless, you may not be the sporting type. Sure, you like walking the dog and going to the gym, but not everyone enjoys team sports.

And, more importantly these sporting events happen out of working hours and you have other commitments. You may have a young family or you would rather wander through art galleries in your spare time – or both! These activities don’t affect your ability to do your job really well, but they do affect your likelihood of a promotion if the company you work for places a high value on them.

If these scenarios sound familiar then perhaps you simply don’t fit in. If you try to be like your co-workers, but it goes against the grain, then you will just end up becoming frustrated with both yourself and the company. 


If this is the case then you should find a company where extracurricular activities are not part of the criteria for promotion or are ones that suit your individuality. After all, if you were bad at sports you aren’t going to be much use anyway, and this will affect the way your team sees you. If they begin to lose respect for you on the sporting field, this may come out in the workplace, and you’d be better off leaving all together.


Goals and Targets are Becoming Unreachable

Some companies base a candidate’s viability for promotion on goals and targets only. Sure, these are an important part of your job, but so are your other skills too. 

You have developed a good understanding of how the company works from top to bottom. You know how the logistics side of things operates, how data is collected and used, and you have been updating your own skills and expertise by doing online courses in your own time.

However, if you’ve been told that the only way you’ll get a promotion is to reach a target that you feel is unreachable and unreasonable then perhaps it is time to look for a different job.

You may ask for an increase in your budget to reach these goals, but you may not get it. This is sure indication that your company is either setting the promotion bar too high or the senior managers have lost touch with what’s really going on beneath them. In either case, do you really want to stay?

At this point in your career it is imperative that you analyze your specific situation. You need a clear head so don’t do this just after you haven’t got the promotion you so wanted. Make sure you are feeling emotional stable, and you’re not overreacting. 

Create a list of pros and cons about your current position, and see if these give you more clarity. You could also start interviewing other companies to see which one might be a better fit for you. After a lot of soul searching if you still believe that leaving your current company will not increase your chances of being promoted, then by all means, begin making the move now.


And always remember: 

Great managers are made. Not born.

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2 Reasons Why It Might Be Time to Leave Your Current Position

When is it time to leave your job? Most people never think of leaving their position until the day comes and they are rejected for a promotion they thought they deserved.

When this happens many middle managers are so devastated they allow their emotions to take over and they end up leaving their current position. Resigning based on negative emotions is never a good idea, but it is one of the factors affecting career development that has an aversive effect on careers.

Allowing your emotions to cloud your judgement will only lead to further disappointment and a slowing of your career advancement. There are good and bad factors affecting career development, and it is important that you put aside the bad ones, then utilize the good ones for your own advancement.

Knowing when to leave your job is never a walk in the park. It is always going to be emotional. Let’s face it, starting a new job isn’t easy and sometimes it isn’t practical. More often than not, managers stay where they are because changing jobs is just too hard. They give up hope of a tempting career advancement and wrongly accept they are not good enough to sit in the corner office.
Having said that, there may be reasons why you should consider leaving your current job. These should never be considered when in the emotional turmoil of disappointment and rejection, though. They should be fully considered once you understand the reasons completely.

Let’s check them out…

1. You are expected to give up your free time

You sit down with your boss and you are being told why you didn’t get the promotion, and you are surprised to learn it is because you don’t socialize with your team well enough. Now, this is an expectation you may not have realized affected your chances of a promotion, but it does.

Some companies not only support but encourage their staff to meet after work or on weekends. This doesn’t mean long drinking sessions necessarily, but this can happen. It may mean engaging in a sport or hobby together like basketball or soccer. Your company may expect your team to help clean up the environment on the weekends.

Perhaps these things are not your cup of tea and you would rather spend time with your family or your friends. While keeping fit is important, and no one can deny that looking after the environment is crucial, so is your work / life balance. Doing things away from the people you spend most of your time with is important for your well-being. You need your space and your free time should be yours to do with as you please.

2.Impossible and Unachievable Goals are Set

All companies have goals which are an integral part of the company’s success. These usually pertain to sales goals, obtaining new clients or lowering costs. However, if you have been told that to get the next promotion you have to increase productivity by 20%, for example, and this is near impossible then it is time to say goodbye.

Sure, the increase might be achievable if you could expand your team and bring in new members. It might not be impossible if your budget was increased or if you were given more time, but what if these things weren’t supplied? What if you were expected to meet these remarkable targets with what you have now, and it is on possible?

It’s at this point that you realize that a promotion will never happen for you under these current circumstances. If this is case then it is time to find a new position where you’re provided with the appropriate resources to meet your goals, where you are appreciated for what you can offer, and valued as an important member of the team.

Leaving your current position because you are angry and frustrated is not good enough. However, if you have analyzed your specific situation without any emotion then it might be time to move on. You may actually find leaving your current company will increase your chances of being promoted and give your career the much needed boost it deserves.


And always remember: 

Great managers are made. Not born.

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Can You Bounce Back from Losing that Promotion You Thought Was Yours?

Not getting the promotion you thought you had in the bag was devastating. You worked so hard preparing your resume, researching what was needed to fulfil the position, and simply working and planning your career, but that tempting career advancement wasn’t to be yours.

When you were told that you didn’t get the promotion you went through a whole gamut of emotions. You experienced disappointment, frustration, anger and even grief – yes, grief. You lost something that you had all your hopes of a tempting career advancement based on and now the empty void is actually scary.

No doubt you are going to have a lot of questions as to why you didn’t get the promotion. You know that you deliver great results. You also receive lots of pats on the back for your great work. You believe you are appreciated by everyone above and below you. People have told you that you have a natural talent, and you honestly believed that your seniors were hinting that the next promotion was yours. 

Despite all of these great things you didn’t get the promotion- what’s that about? In this situation most managers aren’t able to overcome their disappointment, and while it is understandable that you may want to leave your position, you need to realize that this may result in damaging your career. 

The alternative is to accept that you are not good enough, and make so with where your career is now. It doesn’t have to be like this. Don’t put your career dreams in a drawer and shut it forever. Don’t push aside your desires for career advancement and think you are not good enough.

Only some great managers learn how to bounce back from bitter disappointment, and use it as an advantage, are you one of them? It certainly isn’t easy and it takes a whole lot of courage. However if you are willing to put in the time to plan, review, and research your next move, the add to that a whole lot of understanding, you will become a much better manager – one that will be looked for when the next promotion opportunity arises.

The first thing you need to understand is that being great at your current job doesn’t mean you will be automatically promoted. In truth, the more you advance, the harder it will be to develop the kinds of qualities you’ll need for that next promotion. 

You may be so good at your job your boss may not want to lose you. I come across managers in this situation all the time. You’ll need to make sure that you are not the only one doing a great job on your team. Train someone else to be as good as you, and look at that person as your possible replacement when you are promoted.

As well, one thing you need to understand is that no matter where you are in your career, you have to keep developing your skills and building on your experience. This means that you will be better prepared to handle the challenges a senior position will demand of you.

Do you understand how others see you now? Do they really see a potential senior manager in the making or you, doing what you always do, and doing it well? 

Being able to step back and see your failings isn’t easy. It takes a certain kind of courage and perseverance. No one is good at this from the start because it is a much needed skill that not many of us have naturally, nor is it trained.
However, if you want to know how to become a senior manager you have to start behaving like one now. Learn what skills and experience this position entails and start practicing them. Make sure that your boss sees you making improvements, too.


And always remember: 

Great managers are made. Not born.

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The Writing’s On the Wall. Is It Time to Leave Your Job?

Let’s face it, there are many factors affecting career development which need to considered before you up and leave your job, but are you addressing them or ignoring them?

Think back to when you first started. Did you wake up each morning excited and enthusiastic? Did you worry that you were going to be late because you didn’t want to disappoint your boss? Did get that strange tingling sensation when you sat at your desk, a nervous kind of joy stemming from not knowing what the day would bring, but looking forward to it anyway?
Have these feelings gone away? Are there new and disturbing factors affecting career development which are now hampering your promotion goals?

The truth is if you're not doing what you are passionate about, you are not going to reach your true potential. You will fall into the daily grind and your career path will crumble before you. In reality, your career will simply become ‘just a job’, and you’ll become restless and bored.

Perhaps you need a shake up to renew your love of what you are doing, and the only way to do that is look for a new position.
However, just being bored is not a good enough reason to change companies. Remember that you have worked hard to get to where you are now, and that changing jobs brings a whole new set of issues you might not be prepared for.

So, how can you judge whether it is time to leave? Let’s take a look at your position as a whole. That way you can judge for yourself and make the right decision for your career. Are any of the following an issue for you?


You Don’t Get Along with the People You Work With

Look around you. How well do you know the people you work with? Do you have problems connecting with them? If you really dislike the people you work with you could try to work out the problems you’re having with them, but remember it takes two to tango and you could be wasting your time.

Not getting along with your work colleagues will leave you feeling isolated and vulnerable. Not many people work well in this kind of atmosphere. You need to be in an environment where you are appreciated and valued.


You and the Company are Not a Good Fit

If you believe there are ethical issues in the way the company operates, as well as cultural differences, or other issues such as work ethics that you can’t ignore, then you probably don’t fit in.

You have your standards and you should stick to them. If you thought you could do your job properly, and not have to worry about the moral differences between you and the company then you are sadly mistaken. It is important to work for a company where your ethical and moral values are the same.

Your Work / Life Balance is Out of Balance

We all need down time to relax and spend time with friends and family, no person can live happily cut off. Also, you may have a hobby you are passionate about, but you don’t have time to pursue it.
If your work-life balance is one sided and you are spending too much time at work, and no one at work cares then you may need to find a new position. 


You’re Not Getting Rewarded for Your Efforts

If you feel you are not getting rewarded for your efforts then no one is going to blame you for becoming disgruntled. You may have missed out on promotions you thought you were a shoe-in for. Also, your duties may have changed or your workload increased, and you are still on the same wage.
Many companies work hard to save money and stay within budget, and that’s great because that’s what a successful company does to stay afloat, but if your team have been moved and downsized, and your work conditions haven’t improved then morale will sag. 
If the company is performing well, but this is not reflected in your salary or other rewards then you have every right to be restless.


Moving On

If any of these points have raised doubts then you need to consider changing companies. However, before you rush into your boss’ office and resign take a deep breath. What goals do you need to put into place before you can move on? Take a thorough look at what your career should look like. Consider responsibilities, company culture, compensation, and the benefits you consider worthwhile.
Create a plan with measurable goals and a realistic timeline, and then start looking for that new position which is going to reignite your passion.

And always remember: 

Great managers are made. Not born.

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