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Business Blunders: Avoid the 5 Promotion Assassins

Categories: Workplace Etiquette, Professional Development

This might sound like a no brainer, but if you want to get to that dream job with the corner office and the other perks, you need to become the best you can possibly be at the job you currently hold. I’m not just talking about the actual skills needed to do your job, but also the big picture.

Ask yourself whether you think you are guilty of these five attitudes/character traits, or what I also refer to as the Five Promotion Assassins. If so, consider this blog your wakeup call to change, before you miss that next promotion.

  1. I don’t get along with others (but it’s them, not me). A reputation for being argumentative, prima-donna-like, rude, condescending, disrespectful (to superiors or the guy in the mailroom) —or overly competitive to the point of trying to sabotage others -— will not take you closer to that corner office. Except perhaps in the movies. And even there, the arrogant ones usually get their comeuppance by the end of the flick.
  2. I am self-centered (I don’t care about the company, I only care about me). Are you so bogged down in the little details of your job that you lose sight of the big picture, both your own and your company’s? When it comes to getting that competitive advantage at work, it pays to remember that it’s not all about you. Never has been and never will be, not today and definitely not when you do advance to bigger, higher responsibility positions. Thinking big for yourself and your career means thinking big-picture for your department, your company, and your industry.
  3. I’m slacking (but just a tiny bit). Are you so lost in your dreams of something better that you aren’t making the most of what you have right now? Do you believe your job is ever-so-slightly beneath you, and you could really shine in something bigger? Well, if you don’t care enough to shine where you’re sitting right now, it’s entirely likely no one will ever notice you enough to promote you onward and upward. Shine now
    -- as brightly as you can, and for the right reasons: because that’s what you were hired to do and that’s the person you want to be!
  4. I can’t keep a secret (and I LOVE juicy rumors). As with promotion assassin number one, if you get a reputation for being unable to keep confidential information to yourself, or for being a gossip monger, it’s unlikely you’ll be seen as promotion material. Yes, gossip is juicy. Yes, we all love it. And yes, it’s probably human nature to gossip about others behind their backs. But we all have two natures inside us, don’t we? Fight the dark side! Take the high road! Whatever you want to call it, just do it.
  5. I let things slip through the cracks (and miss deadlines, but don’t tell anyone). Attention to detail and keeping your commitments show that you care, you are organized, you are responsible, and you do what needs to be done. These are all signs that you could handle more responsibility and a bigger position. And unfortunately, the opposite is also true.

Any other promotion assassins you’d like to add to this list? Please feel free to add your comment. For more information about career-limiting moves, please check out my book on that subject, Help! Was That a Career-Limiting Move?

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