Tag Archives: Becoming an executive in your company

Tips For Succeeding At Your Company: How to Climb the Corporate Ladder

17 Feb

So you landed the job. Good for you! Now you want to know how to move up the ranks from an entry-level employee to a manager or executive. The first step to climbing the career ladder is networking with your coworkers. Now, I know you might be wondering why you have to network when you have already landed the job. I understand your reluctance to pop into everyone’s office and say hello, to ask people out to lunch, or to ask people for their advice and opinions when you feel lost. The truth is that I have problems doing those very same things. But, as we all know, it is not what you know, it’s who you know. This includes who you know within your company.

Here are some tips to networking within your company so that you can be considered for that next big position that opens up:

Meet People Outside of Your Department

Mingle, mingle, mingle. That is all you have to do. Sure, it may be awkward at first, especially if some of the people at your work are people with whom you would never normally be friends with. But, the more people you know, the better off you will be when a new position opens up. Meeting the people who work in departments outside of your own will not only allow you to see a glimpse into their daily work life, but it will allow them a chance to get to know what you do and what you bring to the table. So, get out there and socialize! And I don’t mean just talk to the people whose jobs you want. Talk to the staffers, the assistants, the receptionists. Talk to the top-dog execs and the lower level employees. Talk to everyone.

When Someone Asks if You Can Help Them, Say YES

When I first started my current job my boss told me one thing – if you ever tell someone that you don’t have time to do their work they will never come back to you with another assignment. When people come and ask you for help, it is because they need it. The last thing they want to hear is you tell them that you are too busy. Taking work from a different department will allow you to become acquainted with that department and will allow the managers within that department to consider you if and when any other positions open up.

Sure, taking on extra projects may mean more work, but it could mean more possibilities. I was originally hired only as a litigation associate. As it currently stands, the litigation department is a little slow. So I have been seeking work from the real estate/transactional department. By reaching out to the real estate attorneys I have found myself with more work and better opportunities, and I find that some of the attorneys are starting to come to me with work on a regular basis. All you have to do is volunteer to help and I bet they will take you up on that offer.

Make People Trust You

Trust is usually predicated on not lying or being a good friend, but in business trust is based upon your ability to produce good results. If you really want to move up in your company you can’t be producing half-ass work product. Make sure that everything you do is perfect. Sure, you are bound to make mistakes, and that is ok, but make sure to try your best not to. If someone wants you to provide market statistics to them the following morning, make sure you are adequately prepared. Don’t walk in there and stumble over your own words because you have no idea what you are talking about. The more people trust you the more work you will get, and the more work you get the more noticeable you will be to those sitting in the higher positions. The more noticeable you are the more you will considered for new positions.

Find a Mentor

Everyone has those days where things just aren’t going right, you just can’t find the right answer, or you are feeling completely stressed and exhausted. What better than to be able to walk into someone’s office, shut the door, and vent? Everyone needs this. Everyone also needs someone they can turn to when they have those inevitable “stupid” questions that they don’t want to ask anyone else. That is why we all need mentors. A mentor will help you see the bigger picture when you are feeling stressed out. They will help you understand how the company works and how certain people like certain tasks performed. When you first start out at a company seeking a mentor may be awkward or challenging, but the more people you meet and the more relationships you build the easier it will be. Ask someone if you can take them to lunch and pick their brain, it’s that simple.

Make it Known That You Are in it For the Long Haul

Oftentimes, especially with us younger Gen Y folks, employers have a hard time investing time and money into training when they think (or know) that the young employees will leave as soon as a better opportunity comes along. Sure, this may be true for you, but don’t make it known. In fact, tell them and show them that you are there to help the company and you are there to work hard. Employers want to see that you are dedicated. So, if they ask for volunteers to work on a Saturday, sign up. If they need help with extra-curricular activities, sign up. Do anything you can to show them that you care about the company and are there for the long haul.