In Part One we discussed a productive mindset for advancing within the company for which you’re working; be “larger than your present place.” This means adding so much value “above and beyond” what’s expected that you simply no longer fit your position, are eventually noticed for such, and promoted. Of the many excellent responses to the post, I thought website designer, Cesar Abueg summed it up perfectly:
“I remember working in the warehouse of a retail store. I worked hard and got to ‘3rd Key’ where it paid more, managed others, etc. It was refreshing and it felt great after all that hard work. Stand out, get noticed, take risks, and you’ll have a better chance of getting advanced.”
Other times, however, it won’t happen. Perhaps your immediate boss (or even company culture) works from the competitive mindset that believes in keeping people down. Or, the right people are currently in the right place and “they ain’t movin’ anytime soon.” Life is life and either of the above scenarios are certainly possibilities.
You might feel the time is right to find a new company to work for or even to go into business for yourself. In either case, however, the answer remains the same…be “larger than your present place.”
In their book, The 12 Factors of Business Success, Dr. Kevin Hogan, Dave Lakhani and Dr. Mollie Marti advise:
“As long as you are in a job, learn while you earn. And, while you’re doing so, be a huge asset to your company. Make it so that when you leave your company they will have a very hard time replacing you for the same money. The mind-set of people who are eventually going to move from employment to building wealth is to create as much success for their current employer as possible. Be loyal to your company, help a division grow, train an awesome sales team, and so forth. Then take those skills and knowledge into your own adventures.”
Excellent advice. And, it sounds similar to a personal story related by Kimberly Catanzaro, who now owns her own business as a Virtual Assistant. She wrote:
“…I worked at our local sanitation company and was put on phones 1/2 day each day. To some it may have seemed a menial task, but it was exactly what I needed at the time and I truly embraced it and ‘loved’ every person that called in. What resulted was many unsolicited calls to my boss to say ‘what a wonderful girl you have answering phones’. It was very rewarding for me. I have since moved on to owning my own business and truly love what I do.
Kimberly actually lives in my town of Jupiter, FL and I know she has a very successful and thriving business.
So, regardless of whether you want to advance within your company hierarchy, move upward to another company, or begin your own enterprise, be larger than your present place. It works, and brings with it a sense of personal satisfaction that is hard to beat
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Excellent post Bob and very important points.
My father told me when I was a teenager:
“The successful executive does not have a good attitude because of their position. They have their position, because of their good attitude!”
To me, the key word you mention is attitude. I have worked for large corporations and run my own businesses. The individuals who stood out all had one thing in common. A great attitude. (Whenever I hire people, a good attitude is at the very top of my list.) Even when things weren’t going so well, these people would always bring solutions, not just problems.
As Bob has said, if you are stuck in a position that you don’t like, continue to take a positive approach. Find solutions, even if they will not be implemented. Doing so puts you into a positive, creative and productive mindset. Whether you stay in your job or find a new one, this positive outlook can only help you to move forward and maintain personal integrity!
Hi Bob, Great post. Further to Gil’s comments, “Larger Than Your Present Place” is a well fleshed out concept similar to “Dress for Success”, or “Dress for where you want to be”. Naturally, I find it effortless to put my best foot forward and adopt a superhero mentally in my own ventures, as I have a personal stake in them. I think many people find it difficult to be that shining light, example or top achiever in an oranization who’s working environment may be wrought with poor morale, excessive competativeness, or perhaps lack of Leadership or motivation. I find tenured staff tend to be more jaded and set in their ways and closed minded to having anyone around being postive and “making them look bad” by out performing their colleagues. It’s more difficult to excercise this in such an environment, but not impossible. I’m curious on what kind of advice you can give to someone in that position? All my very best to you Bob. 🙂
Hi Gil and Kirsty (two of my fave-oh-right Canucks, and both from far-west Canada), thank you for your comments.
Kirsty, in answer to (what I think is) your your question regarding what kind of advice I could give to someone in that position, it is the exact advice in the article. The fact that it’s not “as natural” to act that way when not in your own business or a positive environment doesn’t mean it isn’t the correct way. In fact, I’d propose that it is just the opposite; it’s those “rare” people who operate “larger than their present place” in those circumsances who eventually advance; either within the company for which they are presently working, OR for another company, or eventually for their own company.
Though I’m wondering, did I misunderstand your question? Are you asking how to operate “larger than your present place” specifically when their is pressure from others not to? Well, in that case one has a decision to make; are they going to allow the unmotivated, bureaucratic others keep them from doing what they feel is right or will they give in and simply act as “others” desire them to act? That, of course, can only be answered by the person in that situation.
I hope this helps. However, please feel free to let me know if I did not really answer the question.
Hi Bob, Both responses are perfect. I know a lot of people are in that position and need to know that at anytime, they can simply drop their “story” of being held back by the jaded, uninspired “unmotivated, bureaucratic others” 😉 and use their higher faculties and a great attitude to rise above it. It is TOTALLY possible. I encourage people to just keep doing this and it will naturally help them rise above it and better avenues will be presented to them. That is how the Universe works. Thanks again Bob!
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Michael, thank you. What a kind compliment. Much appreciated!!
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