Career Development

How to Get Upper Management to Notice Your Ideas

It's no easy feat being noticed, but if you know you're good at your job and are ready for the next step, focus on these five areas.

If you’ve been at a company for a while, the next logical step for you is to advance. You know you’re great at your job and have lots of ideas to help grow the business, but how do you make sure that upper management notices you enough to take you seriously and give you a seat at the table? What you need to do is stand out so that you’ll be noticed. Here are the top 5 ways you can stand out at work and get upper management to notice your ideas. 

  1. Be proactive with solutions

If you’ve been in a role for a while, you can do the job that’s detailed in your job description pretty well. But one way to get upper management to notice your ideas is to look for areas of improvement and provide solutions or suggestions. It’s very easy to poke holes in the process and say that something is broken. But providing a solution is much more valuable to upper management as it shows you’re able to think outside the box. Think through the problem you’re solving and learn how to pitch your solution to your boss or colleagues.

  1. Build a strong network

You spend more time at work than you do at home, and it can be really easy to just put in your hours and go home afterward because you’ve had enough of work time. A big part of getting noticed by upper management is to build a more comprehensive network, particularly outside your own department. If there are social events, attend them. If there are webinars, get involved. If there’s a sport’s team, go play. These are all great ways to learn more about your company, the culture, and how you can build a reputation across your company. This visibility will help you be noticed and is something many leaders use as they develop their careers.

  1. Raise your hand

In high school, the person that constantly has their hand up tends to be labeled annoying. Get that thinking out of your head while you try to build your career. Upper management is always looking for people who are keen to pitch in, especially in a smaller company. All hands on deck is the way to help the company grow. Even if you’re an introvert and don’t feel comfortable networking or getting involved in social events, raising your hand in a meeting and volunteering to help is a great way to be noticed. Keep your eye out for any growth opportunities and get involved. Seizing growth opportunities is a sign of leadership, and upper management is always looking for future leaders to develop in their pipeline. 

  1. Be a strong communicator

If you’re a junior in your company, you may still be hesitant to email upper management directly. The way to get upper management’s attention is to be really clear about what you want and when. For example, if you want to meet for a coffee to discuss opportunities, make that clear. If you want to highlight your successes, make it clear. Being a strong communicator is a clear sign of leadership and is a skill that is hard to come by. If you need a way to structure your thoughts in an email, the pyramid principle is a great way to improve your communication. It helps you think strategically about solving problems, and when you communicate, upper management will take notice as you’re able to capture their attention from the first few words.

  1. Be positive and look for opportunities

It can be really easy to fall into having watercooler conversations with colleagues that focus on how bad the company and management are. Sure, it can be therapeutic, but these conversations aren’t productive. Try to stay impartial and professional when you’re at work. Sure the odd complaint here and there isn’t bad, but if it’s constant, this can be a cancer to the company culture. If there’s discontent amongst your colleagues, try to identify opportunities where things can be improved. Again, coming to our first tip about being proactive, showing that you’re looking for solutions is a great way to be noticed by upper management. It will also show your colleagues that you care and you’ll build an excellent reputation. Strive to treat everyone fairly, including your boss, and stay out of office drama. 

It’s no easy feat being noticed, but if you know you’re good at your job and are ready for the next step, focus on these five areas. You will be well on your way to getting noticed. These areas display leadership, dedication, and help you build a good reputation within your company. With time, being noticed by upper management will keep you moving in the right direction and help you advance your career. 

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