…well or the next level in your career. Do you believe that talent, results, and competence alone will help attain the success you deserve and land you the coveted CEO occupation?
Sometimes but not always and I will tell you why. You will observe in your organization there might a super talented hardworking executive who had not received the success he rightfully deserves. Could one reason be that the leadership looks at the work done but does not see the person behind it? It could also be possible that although he is a good worker, he might be perceived as not having executive presence or leadership capability. To attain the sacred annals of the leadership in any organization, you need to have three powerful principles operating in: – Perception, Visibility and Influence
Joel Garfinkle in his book ‘Getting ahead’ prescribes the PVI Model of Perception, Visibility and Influence. When used together, these three powerful principles will help create the right branding for you, amplify your presence across the organization as well as have powerful people advocating your case.How does this model work?
Step 1: PERCEPTION
How do you influence the way people perceive you? Your behavior says it all – it has both positive and negative connotations, depending on the environment and the organization you work for. Find out the positive behaviors that get rewarded and view it against your current perception. To do so, make a list of those you consider successful and on the upward move within the organization. What are the obvious patterns you can see – Do they come in early and leave late? Do they speak up in meetings and give ideas? Do you find them at the front volunteering for every opportunity that comes to showcase their capabilities? Similarly, are there behavior which is not appreciated like not delivering on deadline, doing mediocre work or not taking the time or energy to get involved with the organization beyond the assigned work portfolio.
Secondly, find out how others in your organization perceive you by asking for feedback. Tell them your agenda of wanting to go to the next level and what behaviors should you are appreciated and should be inculcated. Express your desire for one opportunity to prove yourself up to the task and ask for your boss’s support in that. Give it your best shot, because what you would be perceived as would be dependent on the same.
Step 2: VISIBILITY
Today work environment has a very talented and ambitious generation at work. So in order to be exceptional, it is not enough to perform very well, you also need to ‘toot your own horn’.
You might be performing well, but unless the right people know how well you are performing, you’ll be overlooked.
You have to make you that the people around you who you are and what you do. Celebrate successes, discuss challenges, and construct team discussions about how you have added value. Tell your boss and peers in other departments about your team’s accomplishments. Your team’s success is a reflection of your leadership.
As an individual, the following actions might help you gain more visibility:
a) Getting assigned to high-profile projects that will positively impact the organization’s goals. Volunteer to take charge of the endeavor, and put all of your zeal and concentration into doing the best work that you can. You would have the opportunity to shine as a manager and gain credit and visibility from subsequent success.
b) Interact with the key decision-makers in your company. Attend the meetings they attend and join in the conversation. Get to know them and, make sure they know you. Align yourself with the top executives who have the best standing in the firm and you will be seen in a positive light because of your association with them.
c) Share your ideas. Innovation and emergent leadership is key in today’s workplace. Redesigning processes, saving money for the firm, successfully engaging a high performance team, all of which can earn you a reputation as someone who has value to the firm at multiple levels.
d) Toot your horn. Associate yourself with good ideas, successful executives, challenging projects in order to build your own personal brand. Give your 200%, go the extra mile, take complete ownership of anything you are putting your name and reputation on line for.
Step 3: INFLUENCE
Once you enhance your perception and gain visibility first. Only then will you be able to influence others. How to accomplish that? Firstly understand there are 3 tiers of influence you need to work on – your superiors, your peers and your subordinates. How they perceive you will go a long way in establishing you as a key player in the office game.
1) Superiors – Find out what are the key priorities of those at the level you wish to be and make those priorities your own. Tell them about the problems you have solved and the projects you have successfully completed. Express your enthusiastic support in the achievement of their goals and volunteer to help in any manner possible.
2) Peers – Build rewarding cross-departmental relationships by developing a strong understanding with your co-workers in other departments by helping when you can and allowing them to contribute to your processes increasing their own mileage and visibility. Find out from other managers about their departments and processes, as well as know their spheres of influence.
3) Subordinates – Allow your team with the permission to make choices about how they wish to work and see how the decision they make affect the business. Do not micromanage instead put them in control and make them want to do well. Assign important projects and then step back and let them own the results. When they feel ownership for their work and the team’s success, they will work with increased fervor and focus in contributing to your success as team leader.