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If you have been in the workplace for a couple of years, you have most likely already learned the lesson that your talent and hard work will not ensure your promotion. The myth of the meritocracy has been shattered. Though it seems unfair to be passed over to less qualified candidates, it can be a rude awakening to the reality of the workplace today. It takes more than your talent and great performance to get ahead.

Here are the five things you need to do to get the promotion you deserve:

1.  Self promote

This can be a delicate subject for women because of our hesitancy to advocate for ourselves, but research by Catalyst confirms that women who let others know of their accomplishments receive more promotions and better compensation. They are, in fact, also happier with their jobs.

As women we need to understand that self promotion is a necessary part of our job and our responsibility. If you wait for others to discover you and reward you for your performance, you are likely to remain invisible and consequently be passed over repeatedly for new opportunities.

Promotion is a leadership skill that must be learned for you to move ahead. Understanding your value proposition and how you add value to the business is critical to building the visibility and credibility you need. Letting others know what you and your team have accomplished as well as how you add value to the business positions you to be part of ongoing business solutions.

 2.  Understand and embrace the politics.

You may think that office politics is dirty and a waste of time, however, the avoidance of workplace dynamics can put you in a very vulnerable position. Relationships are critical for your success and knowing who has the power and influence over your career advancement is the key to your political savvy. Because the political landscape is constantly changing, it is your responsibility to stay current with the reality of your work environment. People come and go and their power also comes and goes. Observe how decisions are made. Identify who the decision makers are and who influences their decisions.

It’s also critical to understand all the rules as well as the unwritten rules. What does it take to get promoted? What are the relationships you need to build and strengthen? Understanding the reality will help you navigate successfully.

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