4 Tips to Quickly Climb the Corporate Ladder
People always talk about how they hate corporate politics. This is not political. It’s about how to maneuver inside of an organization in the appropriate way.
If you’re interested in becoming a savvy business leader, here are some important things to be mindful of:
You always have to be giving
Always, always, always, you have to be giving. What I try to do is make sure that the people who work around me are better off than I am. I try to give as much as possible to that effect.
Part of that means giving credit where credit is due. At the end of the day, what you want to do is build a caring and engaged group of people around you — people who are going to be there and protect you in the event that a political situation does happen.
Create Space and Opportunity
Here’s an important thing to think about. And that is: you don’t have to take the person’s job above you in order to move up.
Too many people believe that it’s a zero sum game. Corporate ladders are actually more like pyramids, so if taking out the person above you is what’s on your mind, that’s just not a great way to think.
More importantly, how do you actually create space and create opportunity for someone?
For instance, when I wanted to get to a C-level title, instead of trying to take someone’s job, I created the E-commerce role. I created space and opportunity, which created space and jobs underneath me (in the form of a whole new team).
Remember to think about creating that kind of space.
The Coalition of the Willing
Another thing I always tell people is that by the time you realize you need advocates, it’s too late. But if you’re trying to do something, the only group you need full buy-in from is the coalition of the willing.
Most people think “Oh, how am I going to bring the whole organization along with me?”, to which I always say, “Why do you need to bring the whole organization along with you?”
All you need to do is find the people who are ready to say yes.
Keep A Lot of Ores in the Water
In large organizations, what I really like is for you to have a lot of ores in the water at any given time.
People sometimes get so wrapped up in a single project, but the problem is that things tend to derail really quickly. I always had tons of things moving, so if something ever got killed, fine. I was good because we were still moving on other stuff.
I also don’t give up on an idea. I’m relentless about getting the things I know are going to be BIG through the organization.
So, in summary, this is not really about corporate politics. It’s about being savvy. The last thing I’ll leave you with is this piece of advice:
The mark for a great leader is where their number two goes to lead.
I’d love to compile some more notes and thoughts around navigating through an organization, so send me yours! TXT Me: (646) 759–1837
And for more on this, catch the latest episode of my YouTube show, Let’s Talk About It!