Career progress and performance is an important area in life and through my experience in striving to improve my performance I’ve learned to find many ways to perform well in my career.  It’s not been without its share of hard work though!  And as a manager, I also have insight and perspective from the other side of expectations and performance improvements and so these career tips come from that mix of experience and from my own study and practice in my career.  Please comment below if you have related experience or any experience/stories where you have used this tip!

Do Work Your Boss Does

This tip is really key when it comes to demonstrating that you are interested, willing and able to advance your position.  It’s to do some of the work your boss does, especially the work that is not necessary your responsibility, yet!  When you are able to show your ability to do work that your boss does it shows you boss and their peers that you are capable of being promoted.  There are a number of ways to go about this and many are straightforward and obvious, while others may be long term learning areas, either way they are worth seeking out and demonstrating that you can work at their level or on tasks that they are currently responsible for.

There are many areas to do this and finding out about your boss’ role is the first step.  Hopefully, they are a good boss and meeting with you regularly in a one on one where you have a chance to ask them questions about their own role.  If not, you can request to have a meeting from time to time with them asking specifically about their role and tasks that you may be able to help them do or practice doing yourself with their help or for their feedback.  If you don’t have an option or are uncomfortable asking them directly, you may be able to find out from HR, your boss’ peers or simply by observing their work and learning to understand their tasks on your own.

No matter how you find out, pick some thing that they do that appear like something you could do yourself and just ensure it is not sensitive work like anything involving knowledge or information that you should not yet have.  You don’t want to pry for information that you are not supposed to have.  Once you have the task, start practicing it with or without your boss’ authority and when you are ready to present your results or take it to the next level, its important to ask them for feedback on how well you did and always make sure you are prepared to still let them control that task or stay informed even if they have an option now to rely on you for it.  Offer to do it for them whenever possible and ensure you give them the results and the credit.  This is important!  Doing the work of your boss is best when they want you to do it and it helps them, this will be seem very positively and will almost always impress your boss and open up more options to learn more and take on new responsibilities.  In the long run, this can put you in the running for promotion much sooner than waiting for it and it lets you steer your career progression instead of sitting back and waiting for it to happen.

Finding the work that your boss does and learning to do it will let you work more WITH your boss instead of simply, for them!

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