Thursday, March 4, 2021

7 successful executives share what it takes to climb the ladder during COVID

Jessica Thiefels

Are you ready to advance your career but worry about getting noticed through a Zoom lens? The COVID-19 pandemic has prompted several discussions about promotion etiquette. Some employees are wondering what they should do if the pandemic puts their promotions on hold, while others wondered about the ethics of asking for promotion during this time.

If you’re ready to climb the career ladder despite the pandemic, you have the power to get noticed—either your current company or even a competing one. But don’t take it from us. Here’s what seven executives had to say about growing your career during COVID.

1. Evaluate your Digital Presence

If you want the leaders in your industry to notice you and vie for your talent, make sure you can easily be found online and that your digital profiles look their best.

“Covid has presented an excellent opportunity for leaders to really focus on developing their personal brand and eminence online, not just around their industry or subject matter expertise, but as people, strategy, and thought leaders,” Victoria Pelletier, VP of North American Talent and Transformation at IBM, says.

Now may be a good time to create a professional Twitter account, attend virtual meet-ups, and showcase how much you know on social. Pelletier says starting out in a virtual setting can also give you some “electronic courage” before you meet in person.  

4. Find a Mentor

If you aren’t sure what you want to do or what options are available within your career field, seek out a mentor who can guide you in the right direction.

“Mentors can support us in reaching our full potential and bring inspiration to our career development,” explains Dorota Lysienia, community manager at LiverCareer. “While mentors help fresh graduates look for career guidance, they can also serve as an excellent source of knowledge for more experienced professionals. Even though it’s currently challenging to meet in person, we can still reach out to them and schedule online mentoring sessions.”

If you’re not sure where to start, consider working with a professional mentor service that can match you with someone who would be the best fit for your goals and desires. 

6. Keep Networking

Despite the pandemic canceling events and moving meetings remotely, it is possible to keep networking. More importantly, the old adage of “who you know,” still rings true. Forming connections today can still help you down the road. Not feeling it? David Cusick, Chief Strategy Officer at House Method shares an important reminder:

“Even if you feel like you’re stuck…don’t stop. Building those connections with people will not only help you grow in your career or grow your business—it will also make your work more fulfilling.”

It’s never too early, or a bad time, to build your network and leverage the learning and career growth opportunities that come from it.

See all 7 tips and the complete TheLadders article



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