Tuesday, January 31


If you have worked during this new millennium, you have found that the corporate ladder has changed since those who are now retiring after 30+ years of service. We are happy with 5 to 10 year terms with companies. How are we going to handle this changing corporate terrain? What does this new corporate ladder look like?

Photo courtesy of www.flickr.com/VividQuotes

Employees are moving side-to-side, up-and-down, and diagonally to reach new career opportunities. Employees are fighting for a small number of promotions and advancement opportunities. Corporate hierarchy has flattened out in most organizations. New proposals and regulations are restricting CEO salaries and bonuses. Where do we fit in?

Here are 3 ways of climbing higher:
1. Education. This goes without saying. High-school, college, post-graduate, on-the-job skills, and continuing education are vital components for our careers. The more knowledge and skills you have, the greater your chances of climbing. A bachelor degree will be as common in the future as a high-school diploma was for the second half of the 1900's.

2. Experience. Any and everything counts. Summer jobs, volunteer work, internships, family business, entry-level, and even student organizational roles will create experiential learning opportunities. We have to be diverse and well-rounded. The ladder has changed. It is moving side-to-side more than it ever has. Think about your last 3 positions. Were they all upward climbing or did you move "lateral," in an effort to acquire more experience for the next rung in the ladder? Chances are you took a lateral promotion. Knowledge gained from other departments of the business allow you to be more marketable.

3. Network. Everyone is jumping on the social media train. We can update our status and blog about anything. You have an outlet and platform if you use it correctly. Readers. Friends. Followers. All who know YOU! That's right. "It's not what you know, it's not even who you know, it's who knows YOU!" Separate yourself from everyone else. Be authentic and create a network. Do your "friends and followers" know more about your eating habits and complaints than they do your business skills and corporate endeavors. Market yourself. You never know who just might find you.

Corporate America is changing. Can we transform our careers? What are some ways you think we can climb to higher and make bigger contributions? How do you think we can be successful?

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