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Show you’re ready to be a leader

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leadership developmentBefore you can move up in your career and step into a leadership role, you must first demonstrate to your boss and other higher-ups that you’re ready for that next level of responsibility. But, how do you do that?

When you feel you’re ready to move up in your organization, start by letting people know, suggests Marian Thier, executive coach and founding partner at List­­ening Impact. “Tell people in senior positions that you’re eager to advance,” she said. “Often those people are so used to you in your current role that they’re not aware that you want to move ahead.”

To spread the word, “make appointments to talk with executives, don’t send an email,” Thier advises.

But don’t initiate those conversations until you can make a compelling case for your promotion, says Matthew Reischer, CEO of LegalAdvice.com. “The most effective way to demonstrate a readiness for managerial responsibility is to be able to intelligently communicate compelling reasons that support your capability.”

Good managers have strong communication skills. Using concrete examples of your qualifications to persuade people you have what it takes to be a manager is strong evidence of your leadership skills, Reischer explained.

Don’t just speak the part, look the part, says Barry Maher, author and keynote speaker on topics such as sales and leadership. “Always act and dress appropriately for the next promotion,” he said. “Make sure those with the power to promote you start thinking of you as the type of person who’d be appropriate for that job.”

Leadership roles require you to work with others to complete a goal. If you want to show you’re ready to be a leader, include others in your projects, suggests Michael Talve, founder and managing director of The Expert Institute.  “The most important thing I look for in potential managers is a natural ability to involve others in their projects.”

For example, “if a marketer involves front-line salespeople in the design of a new email marketing campaign,” he explained. “Doing this shows that you will readily reach out to people that have the skills or knowledge that you need, and indicates the kind of interpersonal savvy that all managers need to master.”

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