It’s one of those things we have to do, even if we find it a little disgusting. Like taking out the garbage.
But unless you put yourself out there regularly, it could be your career you’re trashing.
Try considering self-promotion as part of your job – you know, the “other duties as required part.”
Then maybe you won’t have to hold your nose while you’re doing it, and who knows how far you could go?
Check out these suggestions, and you won’t feel like you’re going to the landfill at all.
- Professionally associate – Join both professional associations and associations of professionals. That way, you’ll get a chance to meet people in your field, and out of it, too. Nurture connections with both groups to raise your profile.
- Meet your co-workers – Make a point of having coffee or lunch or something with people who work in your office. It doesn’t have to be pushy or weird, just explain that you want to get to know your colleagues and what they do. You’ll gain useful information, and maybe make a friend or two. And they’ll get to know you.
- Go to events – You don’t have to stay long, just show up at meetings, official events and other whatnots run by your company, and by those associations you’ve joined. Set yourself a minimum number of people you need to talk to. Introduce yourself, shake hands, chat and make sure you’re seen.
- Volunteer – Do the work. Organize blood drives, beer bashes and softball teams at work. Help out with events organized by your professional associations. You might wind up in a lot of pictures wearing “Team Something!” T-shirts, but people will know who you are.
- Write it up – Newsletters still abound, whether they’re in print or online. Offer to write articles about organizational and company events. Somebody has to do it, and if you do it readily and well, you can use these little pieces to build your reputation.
- Update – You don’t have to be a Twitter monster, but do take full advantage of all the opportunities social media gives you to let your light shine. Use LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter judiciously and only post real achievements. Don’t forget older, slower means of letting the world know what you’re up to, like alumni publications and online registries.
- Become an informal power center yourself – Check out my post, Finding the Real Power Centers at Work. See if you can morph into one of those informal power brokers. The more you can connect with others at work, the better for your career. You might not even realize you’re self-promoting anymore.