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Careers expert Emma-Louise O’Brien from Renovo outlines how remote workers can remain visible and gain promotion.
As we move closer to June 21st and restrictions being eased, it still feels quite early to predict what the working environment will look like post pandemic for most businesses. More companies have adopted a working from home model, and with more employees requesting flexible working, they could be more open to remote working than many think. But what might the impact be on your promotion prospects of working from home and how can you ensure you don’t fall off the radar?
Emma-Louise O’Brien from careers experts Renovo points out several ways you can increase your visibility to ensure you are considered for promotional opportunities in the future if you are working from home.
Ensure you are clear on the business strategy and its objectives. Will there be a requirement for the business to adapt and change direction post pandemic? What impact did the pandemic have on the company you are working for? What challenges are they facing now?
By understanding where the focus will be now, will help you to identify opportunities available in the future.
Now consider where you can add value. How can you help the company to adapt post pandemic to meet and achieve its goals and objectives? What role would you play? What benefit would the organisation gain for utilising your skillset or promoting you? This may also highlight any skills or knowledge gaps. If you work in a flat organisation there may not be an obvious career path for you to follow. Take some time to create a career plan with areas you need to develop and set yourself some career goals.
Opportunities are attached to people. If you are keen to progress, share your career plans, especially with your line manager. Keep conversations open and honest. Volunteer for projects, request additional responsibilities and demonstrate your flexibility. If you are achieving your targets and showing how productive you can work remotely, this will support any future conversations around working remotely longer term.
Not everyone likes to receive constructive criticism, but by openly asking for feedback it will highlight you are keen to develop. Listen and take onboard any comments (both positive and negative) you receive. Identify a mentor to support your career growth. Choose someone you aspire to who has the skillset you want to improve or has chosen a career path you are keen to follow.
With any promotional opportunities, it is essential you are visible to the right key stakeholders in the business. Focus on building relationships with stakeholders across the business remotely right now. Take the time to meet with them virtually. Understand who they are and their preferred communication methods. Schedule in video calls via Zoom or Teams so you can build remote relationships with them. Keep them updated with your achievements and successes, but don’t forget to ask about theirs too.
With more companies becoming more open to flexible working, there still may be a requirement for occasional onsite visibility. Can you come to a compromise? If there was a requirement to be onsite what would that need to look like for both you and the business and how would you make it work?
*Emma Louise O’Brien is Head of Career Coaching at outplacement specialists Renovo.