The Key to Self-Promotion

Don’t you hate being around people who only ever seem to talk about themselves? Recently, I spent some time with a guy who couldn’t shut up about his own success, the things he’s accomplished, and the experienced he’s gained. He went on and on before I finally excused myself from the conversation, immensely thankful that this guy wasn’t someone who worked with me.

After thinking about this encounter, I realized that what makes self-promotion so irritating is that while people use it as a tool to get ahead, it’s really a means of forcing a false sense of respect. Self-promotion says, “look at all of these reasons why you should recognize and respect me.” But there is a much better way to “earn” respect than to toot your own horn.

We live in an all-about-me kind of world. Society tells us that the key to success is to take pride in ourselves, to believe in our skills and boast our accomplishments. But what if that wasn’t true? What if the uncommon way to success was to instead shine light on OTHER people?

What goes against the grain is what makes a lasting impression. When an employee lifts up his or her coworkers, complimenting their successes and boasting their skills, it speaks volumes—it conveys humility, kindness, and a team-focused mindset. Bosses love it when their employees consistently have good things to say about one another! It’s rare and refreshing in a world bent on self-promotion.

So if you want to rise in your organization, stop talking about how awesome you are and start talking about how awesome someone else is. Make a note this week to recognize someone else’s positive performance and go tell your boss about how great they are at their job. It might just get you promoted!