The Mid-Career GPS Podcast

173: Navigating Self-Promotion: Why You Must Be Your Biggest Cheerleader

August 08, 2023 John Neral Season 3
The Mid-Career GPS Podcast
173: Navigating Self-Promotion: Why You Must Be Your Biggest Cheerleader
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Have you ever felt the need to promote your professional skills, but were held back by the fear of coming across as arrogant? Tune in to our latest episode where we explore the fine line between shearing your own sheep and tooting your own horn. We unfold a simple trick that can help you trumpet your accomplishments authentically, inspired by the confidence and conviction displayed by icons such as Taylor Swift.

This episode is a treasure trove of strategic tips on self-promotion and career advancement. Learn how to use the potent word 'help' to narrate your achievements, provide concrete examples that highlight your contributions, and understand why your reputation is a key element of your professional persona. We wrap up with some practical advice on increasing your visibility and sharing your success stories genuinely. Don't miss out on this insightful discussion that can guide you through your mid-career transition and beyond.

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Speaker 1:

Who catches you doing good? Growing up, I remember one of the nuns at my school used to say that, Sure, it's a nice sentiment, but honestly it doesn't help us in our careers very much. You know the drill do good work and people will notice. Well, what if they don't? In this episode, I'm going to help you increase your visibility, especially if you're going after that promotion, and teach you a simple trick to help you brag about yourself that feels authentic and genuine as you move toward your next advancement opportunity. Let's get started. Hello, my friends, this is episode 173 of the Mid-Career GPS podcast. I'm your host, John Narrell. I help mid-career professionals who feel stuck, undervalued and underutilized show up to find a job they love, or love the job they have, by using my proven four-step formula. Now, if you're looking for some help in navigating your mid-career transition, I've got a free resource to help you. My guide is called Five Mistakes Mid-Career Professionals Make and Need to Stop Doing, and it'll help you focus on what matters in your job search and your career progression. You can check the show notes or visit my website at johnnarrellcom to download your free guide and let me help you figure out whatever is next for you and your career and, while you're on my website, make sure to check out the Resources tab for other free and paid resources as well. To give you some context about today's episode, I don't think bragging about how wonderful you are is an admirable trait, but I do believe there are times when we have to do it. You see, no one is going to sing your praises or advocate for you as much as you can and should do. So. When I'm working with my clients and we're talking about how they can show up from this place of value and service and talk about their accomplishments, where they don't feel like they're bragging or boasting, we have to get very clear about their thoughts. So here's my question for you what do you think about people who brag about themselves? Perhaps you find them selfish, arrogant, cocky, overconfident, full of themselves, but what I want to offer you here is that this doesn't have to be you. So, as you're thinking about how people brag about themselves and your thoughts about that, I want to pose this other question what do you think about people who are humble? Do you find them to be quiet? Do they fit in with everyone else? Do they often kind of blend in with their surroundings? Well, if you're on social media, regardless of what platform you're on, you probably are following certain influencers who, let's just admit they are pretty good about touting how great and wonderful they are. Do you think they're bragging about themselves? If you've been to see one of Taylor Swift's concerts this summer or you know who she is, obviously you probably do know who she is. Do you think she brags about herself? You can bet darn sure she brags about herself. But watch how she does it. She does it with a certain confidence and conviction that this is who I am, this is what I stand for. It ties in directly with her values. In a lot of ways and I'm not a huge Taylor Swift fan, but in a lot of ways what happens is that what she puts out there she is so confident and assured of herself because she knows what her audience and her fans and her listeners want. The more confident she is in delivering that, the more confident she is in that messaging. How can you take that example and bring that over into what's going on in your career? In other words, how can you professionally to your own horn and increase your visibility and get noticed more often as the outstanding professional you are? Well, I've got some tips for you. More than likely, if you are listening to this podcast, you are a heart-centered mid-career professional who refuses to settle in their career. You realize that you have a lot more left in your career impact that you want to make and you don't want to be overlooked by your upper management for doing the role that you see yourself as a potentially and honestly great fit at doing. But the problem here, or the challenges, is that how do you tell that story where you're being inclusive but at the same time, showcasing your talents and abilities? This is important for you because this is what comes up with your annual performance review. It comes up when you're interviewing and, on some level, it comes up when you're networking. So here's a few tips to help you consider how to tell your story a little bit differently. So the first thing is I want to offer you to share success stories in the context of team achievements. So when you're talking about a successful project or task that your team was able to do, what I want you to do here is to emphasize what the team effort was and acknowledge certain contributions of your teammates, but I also want you to pull it back to what were you directly responsible for If that project was successful under your leadership. How did you do that? How were you developing people on the team to be more successful? It is absolutely okay and strongly advised that you celebrate your team's success, but you have to remember that when you're looking for that promotion and looking to move up and level up, you have to bring it back to your specific results and what you did. So, yes, the team did this, but under your leadership, what did you do? Where were you the motivator, connector, the thought provoker, the challenger, the advocate? I want you to really think about your team's achievements directly connected to what you yourself did. Now, on multiple podcast episodes, I have shared this next tip and it's important for me to reiterate it here. But when you think about showcasing your talents and abilities, a lot of times people are fearful that they're going to come across as being a braggart. Here's how we change that. The brain is triggered very differently when it hears this word help. How are you going to help them? How has your experience helped a team be successful, like we talked about earlier, or you've driven particular results in an organization that helped make them more successful by being generous with your knowledge? You'll absolutely earn the respect and admiration of your colleagues, but part of that is due because you are being helpful. You are that resource for them. You are offering your expertise and support to others without being pushy. At the top of every episode you hear me say I help mid-career professionals who feel stuck, undervalued and underutilized show up to find a job they love, or love the job they have. That is me putting my value out there, but it is also me being very confident in that I know what works. I know how to help people. I know how to help people who are feeling miserable in their careers get out of it so they can get back to work and into a job that they feel far happier than where they are now. And I do that because I know how to help them. So I wanna offer for you where are you helping within your organization? Where can you specifically tag your specific results that you can say to your immediate supervisor or a potential hiring manager? This is how I helped. This is what I did. Those are key phrases. A lot of times, when people think about showcasing their talents and abilities, they will use a word that my own thoughts around it are. Admittedly, it kind of makes me wanna vomit in my mouth. So I just wanna be very clear about that, because people will throw this word out and we don't really know what it means and they'll say, oh well, I'm very passionate about what I do. Okay, passion is great If you mean passion as being dedicated, fully committed, willing to put in extra hours. Those things are great. If you are not providing the color and the context behind what you mean, when you say that you are passionate about what you do, you are missing the mark. I have heard from numerous people that the word passion can be a huge turnoff, especially if it's in your LinkedIn profile or you're networking or connecting with somebody. Be clear about what you mean, and it leads me to my next tip. Provide concrete examples about where your achievements and your results are. Don't make these grandiose statements that kind of get put out there and people are like walk away from the conversation with you and they say nothing really stood out, they're not memorable. Concrete examples are usually attached to a metric, so a number or some kind of measurable result that you can share with them that says okay, here's how I saved this amount of money, here's how we decreased time on task by this percentage. We were able to bring in this many more full-time employees onto the project because of the work we had. More concrete examples absolutely, absolutely Color the picture far better. And here's the last thing that I wanna offer you. When you think about how you can talk more about yourself, it always comes back to branding. What are people saying about you when you're not in the room? It's my favorite Jeff Bezos quote. Okay, and when you think about that, what are people saying about you? Here's where you can ask for very specific feedback or even a testimonial or recommendation. That can help. This is especially important if you work in an organization where the culture is such that you only hear things about your performance when you've done a bad job, or you get to an annual performance review and you hear you're doing good work. Keep it up. You can solicit feedback anytime you want by having an intentional conversation and asking for it. Do not ask the question okay, how am I doing? Ask a more specific question. How was I in this meeting when we talked about blank? In the last 30 days on this project, what do you believe I've done well regarding leading the project and what's one area I can improve upon Asking for feedback and testimonials is a great way for you to hear what other people are saying about you. That ultimately and directly ties back to your specific achievements about the work you get to do every day and the work you want to be doing. If you're looking to level up internally, what I want to offer you here is find out. Whether it's in your work portal or through HR, there is typically a document that lists certain core competencies of people at various levels. That should be one of the first things you are looking at when you are considering a promotion as to how well you are meeting those competencies and can provide evidence about how well you are demonstrating those competencies. That's another area where you can solicit feedback from. That can absolutely help you toot your horn just a little bit better about how well you're doing or what you are working toward. Remember here that the key to effective self-promotion is to strike a balance between showcasing your abilities and maintaining that humility that feels very genuine and authentic to you. Your focus here is around building a reputation for being a competent, reliable and collaborative professional, and all that will do is it will naturally lead to an increased recognition and opportunities for you in the long run, but talking about yourself and doing it in a way that feels very natural and genuine and authentic, especially when you incorporate the word help in terms of who you help and what you help them do specifically, I assure you will absolutely change your narrative and the way people are hearing that. Hopefully, that all leads to your next advancement opportunity. So, my friends, remember this we build our mid-career GPS one mile or one step at a time, and how we show up matters. Make it a great rest of your day. Thank you for listening to the Mid-Career GPS podcast. Make sure to follow on your favorite listening platform and, if you have a moment, I'd love to hear your comments on Apple Podcast. Visit JohnNarrowcom for more information about how I can help you build your mid-career GPS or how I can help you and your organization with your next workshop or public speaking event. Don't forget to connect with me on LinkedIn and follow me on social at JohnNarrowCoaching. I look forward to being back with you next week. Until then, take care and remember how we show up matters. You.

Increasing Visibility
Strategies for Self-Promotion and Career Advancement
Mid-Career GPS Podcast Promotion and Conclusion