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  • Writer's pictureRodney Alkins

Strategies for the Rise up the Corporate Ladder

Some People are Eaten Alive in Pursuance of a Successful Career

Is it really what you want your life to be? Is it what you want to remember as you sit retired, in your million dollar home, possibly without children or a wife. All you have for company is your house keeper from 8am - 4pm daily and on weekends it is just you and the dog, who has more pleasant memories than you do?

In pursuance of corporate success there must be a balance struck between your personal and professional life, as a matter of fact they should compliment each other. Obviously, if there is imbalance one life will prevail over the other. It is up to you to decide which life matters most to you. Please don't let money be your only motivator for achieving corporate success, you will certainly lose in the end.

In the recent past, people worked within the same company for 20 to 30 years and some times in the same positions for just as long and in those days, time and demands seemed to be less intensive, but in today's fast paced technology driven world the efficiency systems determine how long you work, if you are promoted, fired or resign. If you have forgotten, the family and success of family, community and society was more important, people cared more about life. However, today there is no time for that as humanity is slowly being put aside for more emotionless technologies which secure the bottom line: increased profitability.

So now that you understand the decisions that must be made today for the rest of your life here are some keys things you need to do to move up the corporate ladder and more so now in this tight economic environment.

Build strong relationships. Networking never goes out of fashion, no matter what one's level in an organization. Much as we might like to think of staff reductions as a purely rational process - based solely on individual merit - the fact is, during such times personal relationships do come into play, and can make the difference between who stays and who doesn't.

Develop multiple skills. The more expertise you have, the more facets you understand about a company's operations, the more valuable you make yourself. As in many sports, there's always a market for versatile utility players who play numerous positions.

Make your boss look good. Obvious, but still sound career advice. (What's the alternative: "Make your boss look bad?") I have asked myself quite a few times why should an employee do this especially when the the boss is poor and cares little for the staff. This is different from doing your job in some respects, but the context here is that the manager has your job in their hands.

Make your boss' boss look good. If there are ways you can do this - with of course your manager's approval, as you never want to bypass him or her in this process - it can demonstrate your potential, your ability to think beyond current circumstances. (If you're a CEO, don't disregard this one, as you may report to the chairman of the board who then in turn reports to Minister ( in the case of state owned enterprises)

Be consistently reliable. Reliability is a cornerstone of business and a fine core personal attribute. Businesses may not often need brilliant bursts of creativity, but they always need "the buses to run on time." If you can make yourself a valued "go-to person," counted on by many throughout your organization, that's a safe place to be, an excellent reputation to have. Sounds very familiar to me.

Be consistently collaborative. Given the challenges that can surround vast projects with multiple participants, employees who collaborate effectively with all kinds of people are usually in high demand. In other words be a team player.

The above six strategies can assist you in crawling up the proverbial corporate ladder, but these strategies do not mean immediate success if any at all. Success is relative and it means different things to different people. Additionally, the corporate environment is very competitive, political and can also be dangerous depending on the industry. So work smart, set SMART objectives and see you at the end.

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