Increase Your Visibility the Right Way
Many leaders believe the harder they work and the more they do will be enough for them to get rewarded or even promoted. That is not the case. Many organizations today use a calibration process that involves a group of leaders meeting to discuss candidates for promotion, special projects, and leadership programs. As someone who has facilitated those conversations, I can tell you it goes something like this:
Next, we have Erica. She is a top performer who worked on the innovation initiative that resulted in us launching our new service offering. Because of the leadership Erica demonstrated during the project while staying current on her other work, we also see her as having high potential and would like to nominate her for promotion. One senior leader says, “who is Erica? I do not believe I met her.” Another senior leader says, “I think I met her during one of the update meetings.” And the third says, “I agree with Jane’s recommendation to consider her for promotion.”
What do you think is the result? Nine times out of ten, the result is Jane having a conversation with Erica, indicating that she needs to increase her visibility and should start by getting to know two senior leaders (Ann and Charlie) better. Erica confused and dumbfounded, says “ok” and leaves the meeting with her boss.
Some organizations openly communicate the process and the leaders who participate in the calibration process, and others do not. Given this current trend in organizations, you will want to take steps that move you toward being visible in the right way.
Yes, there is a right and a wrong way to be visible.