Is the flexibility of hybrid working making you less visible? This is the question those of you who are seeking to get ahead must ask yourself.
Firstly, let’s consider your voice, or your brand and why it is important that others know you. The most critical reason is that all decisions about your future are generally made when you aren’t in the room. So, if no one knows about you, how can you expect to be offered opportunities, progressed or be promoted?
When we talk about your brand, we aren’t trying to turn you into Mcdonald’s but like the golden arches, we want you to be associated with values and skills that are unique to you. For example, Melanie is very strategic, great at managing a project she always lands them on time and with a happy team. What are your brand values?
Secondly, once you work out your brand values you then need to think about how you will communicate this across your organisation. How will you get known?
Within your team, you can do a lot to be visible. Here are some ideas:-
- You can chat with your manager about your aspirations, explain your brand and seek feedback. Perhaps they view you differently and if that’s the case you will need to do some consistent work to change their mind.
- Ensure that you present regularly at meetings. Often this is confronting the first few times so request a spot on the agenda and try and ensure you reinforce your brand values whenever you talk. E,g “From a strategic perspective we decided to..”
- Comment regularly.
- Many meetings today are online so it is more important in the hybrid world that you are on the agenda.
If you are struggling with a manager who is not supportive, try our short course on Managing Up (learn more).
Externally, there are a number of different ways you can get known.
- Set aside time every week to plan meetings with leaders from across the company.
- Talk to the HR team and discuss your brand values. Again, seek feedback. Remember even if you don’t get the answer you expect, feedback is gold, it is a great opportunity to understand other’s perspectives.
- Establish a skills gap analysis and work on “Networking Up” There is a lot more detail in our short course.
- The chance of bumping into people has reduced in this hybrid world so you need to be more intentional and plan your networking-up sessions.
Whilst all these different things are great none of them will work unless you give yourself permission to ” speak up” and unless you want to find your voice and be recognised. Sometimes our own worst enemy is ourselves and the feeling of imposter syndrome.
Be brave and find your voice today.