The Subtle Art of Self-Promotion
You must have heard this very often – The rat race is over. And the rats have won.
Have you sometimes tried to connect this with where you find yourself, today? Especially when you see people of lesser ability moving ahead of you and you curse your luck. Well, to paraphrase Julius Caesar, we could say – the fault, Dear Brutus, is not in our stars; it’s in what we do to present and promote ourselves.
People often view “Self-Promotion” as unethical, and call people who indulge in self-promotion as dishonest, shameless even. For my part, I disagree with such labels most vehemently.
I have my reasons and those are very strong reasons as you will find later in this piece. But the all-encompassing reason is: If you don’t promote yourself, who else will?
Today’s environment screams at us, and keeps encouraging us to promote ourselves. In an era where we face a bombardment of messaging, it becomes even more important to consistently promote ourselves. If you are working to a plan, which is a sensible thing to do, even more sensible will be to ensure that it doesn’t seem like a plan.
The other aspect that we must consider is the fact that we are increasingly working in large organizations or working for large organizations. It is thus easy to appear like a very small speck, one that could easily get blown away and disappear. Thus, you must keep yourself pegged and strongly so. You must be seen, heard, and taken note of.
Unlike in the past, we have multiple avenues to do so, thanks to technology.
Starting from email to various social media platforms; thus, we have platforms like FB & Insta on one hand and LinkedIn on the other. These allow you to have your say, present your credentials, and use them to get ahead.
Now I am not talking about email marketing in the way most people know of it. But sample this.
Let’s say you are a team leader whose team has achieved something critical and important. You could write individual emails (if it’s not a team running into 100s of people) or write a mail to the team where you highlight those who have made significant contributions. Don’t forget to mark seniors who matter while you send the mail.
Now, let’s go a step further. Use FB to congratulate people involved (tag them), use pictures, etc., and convert it into a celebration. Turn the same content into a professional on LinkedIn and a bit of fun on Instagram.
If it’s an individual achievement, please send thank you emails to seniors who may have guided you and juniors who may have helped you. And use social media platforms depending on the media’s environment to announce the achievement – in a fun way or professional manner.
Now what happens if you don’t promote yourself? Don’t use the methods I have mentioned above. Or any other method? Well, it’s likely that people who matter wouldn’t know of you – be they people in your immediate environment at work, or those who may be your potential employers or clients.
Some people use WhatsApp, very smartly. They use festive and other occasions to greet you – they try and get innovative and creative with the greeting and ensure that it establishes a connection between them and the person who receives the greeting.
There are many ways to promote yourself and you are only limited by your imagination. Opportunities arise all the time; it’s up to you to make the most of them.
But promote you must as nobody else will.