Design your own promotion

a group of people in a meeting setting
In the ever-changing environment that is work, a proactive approach towards career advancement is not just advisable; it's necessary. The age-old career ladder, once clear and linear, has morphed into a complex labyrinth of opportunities and challenges. If you’re looking to navigate this maze and keep your career moving forward, the solution often lies in a deep understanding of the industry you work in, coupled with a strategic alignment to your organisation's goals.

The foundation: Industry insight

Industry insight is not just about understanding the current trends or knowing who the key players are. It's about immersing yourself in the ecosystem of the industry, identifying the undercurrents that move it, and being able to somewhat accurately predict where it's headed – easier said than done. You need to approach this with a blend of curiosity, continuous learning and strategic thinking.


Curiosity is an often-overlooked skill that propels us to ask questions, challenge the status quo and seek out new knowledge and experiences. In the context of your industry, this might mean exploring emerging technologies, methodologies or business models that could impact your field.

Continuous learning about your industry

The commitment to never stop learning is vital. This can be through formal education, but also through reading industry publications, attending conferences and engaging with thought leaders on social media. The goal is to always be expanding your understanding of the industry.

Strategically thinking about your industry

This involves seeing the big picture. How do the pieces of the industry puzzle fit together? What are the potential implications of latest trends or technologies? By thinking strategically, you can anticipate changes and understand how they might affect your organisation.

Strategic alignment: The key to organisational success

Understanding your own organisation's strategy is equally important. It's about aligning your career goals with the direction in which the business is headed. This alignment demonstrates to leaders that you are not just looking out for your own advancement, but that you are invested in the company's success as well.

Understand your organisation's goals

This seems straightforward, but it requires effort to truly grasp the nuances of your organisation's strategic objectives. This might involve engaging with strategic planning documents, attending briefings by senior leadership, and asking insightful questions.

Identify how you can contribute

Once you understand the goals, the next step is to identify how your unique skills and knowledge can contribute to achieving them. This might mean identifying a gap that your particular expertise can fill or proposing a new initiative that aligns with strategic objectives.

Communicate your value

Understanding your value and being able to communicate it effectively is crucial. This doesn’t mean boasting about your achievements. Instead, it's about demonstrating how your work contributes to the organisation's goals. This could be through regular updates to your manager, presentations to leadership, or even informal conversations where you articulate your understanding of the company’s strategy and your role in it.

The path to promotion

With a deep understanding of your industry and a clear alignment with your organisation's strategy, you are well-positioned to design your own promotion. But this isn't just about climbing the corporate ladder. It's about creating value for yourself, your team, and your organisation.
Here are some strategies to consider:

Be proactive

Don't wait for opportunities to come to you – seek them out or create them. This could mean proposing a new project, taking on additional responsibilities, or suggesting new solutions to existing problems.

Build relationships

Your career advancement is not just about what you know, but also who you know. Building strong relationships across the organisation can provide you with mentors, sponsors and a network of support. These relationships are crucial when seeking to advance your career.

Showcase your expertise 

Finally, don't be shy about highlighting your expertise. This could be through leading workshops, writing articles for industry publications or thought leadership articles on your LinkedIn, or speaking at conferences. Doing this will not only highlight your knowledge and skills but also demonstrate your leadership and commitment to your field.
Designing your own promotion is a strategic endeavour that requires a deep understanding of both your industry and your organisation's strategies. It's about aligning your career aspirations with the needs of your organisation and contributing in a way that is recognised and valued. Remember, it's not just about advancing your career; it's about advancing your organisation and the industry as a whole. Through curiosity, continuous learning, strategic thinking and a commitment to adding value, you can navigate the maze of modern career paths and design your own route to success.

blog promo menu

Popular articles


Does job security exist anymore?

Reframe or resign?

Design your promotion

Benefits can top up your salary expectations

How to get on with your co-workers

How to advance your career in 2024

Choosing your own adventure

Discover the must-have skill employers seek today

Meet your new work colleague: ChatGPT

How (and why) to create boundaries at work

Afraid of changing jobs? How to challenge your fears

How to advance your career in 2023

How to change careers

Are you in line for a pay rise this year?

Disappointing pay rise? Here is what to ask for instead

9 simple wellbeing tips when working from home

Lifestyle hacks for increase focus, productivity, energy and joy

Holiday job search myths and realities

"The Great Resignation": Why are so many thinking about quitting?

How to upskill when working from home

How to answer difficult interview questions

8 interview questions for teaching position


Closing the Loopholes Bills 2024: What it means for you and your employees

Deploying a Managed Service Provider

Advancing gender equality in construction

How to build a curious team

Key quarterly trends in the world of work

Regulatory issues impacting your workforce

Case Study: ACF

Salary transparency is coming, are you ready for it?

Are you still using the same strategies in a bid to secure skills?

Could a four-day work week win the talent you need?

AI has taken a big leap forward, what now?

Why businesses need to prove their sustainability credentials

Defining the new equation in the world of work

Employee retention: What's your game?

Manage Salary Expectation Gap

Budgets are tight how can I recognise and reward my staff?

View all blogs