What does it take to get a promotion at work right now?
One or more of these, the more the merrier: a better job offer, demonstrated greater value added compared with peers, promise of doing a better job than the person currently in the desired position, an industry award, a bold proposal, sleeping with the boss.
What is the most unique strategy you would recommend for current workers who are looking to get ahead in this economy?
Write a proposal for an initiative that, while consistent with the culture and mission of the organization, would be an exciting yet realistic quantum leap ahead for the organization. Send it, in advance, to the attendees of an important meeting. Get their input. Get permission to present the revised version at the meeting. Make that presentation with CEO-like crispness.(Watch C-Span, CNBC, and YouTube to see CEO types in action.)
What is your take on going the extra mile at work and helping out other teams if you have those skills?
Working s generally more rewarding, both financially and in accomplishment, than going home, watching TV, playing golf, and/or drinking or doing drugs.
What do you think about transparency at work? Should all workers be that honest?
It's not realistic. Especially in tough times, inside knowledge can be very helpful. It's all well and good to say "Share for the common good," but in the end, most people act in their self-interest--they want to get ahead or at least don't want to be a victim of the next round of layoffs.
How important is it to be connected to your colleagues through social networks? I know you think it's key. I think it's usually overrated---Most people spend more time at it than the benefits they derive (e.g., participating in the discussions on LinkedIn.) I do like Guy Kawasaki's YouTube video 10 Ways to Use LinkedIn and his article Ten Twitter Tips.
Do you believe that growing your brand outside of your company can help you inside?
Yes. Give speeches at conferences, get articles written about you in trade publications.
But Dan, frankly, having had a zillion clients play these games to "get ahead," it feels a little sickening, kind of like the movie, They Shoot Horses Don't They, in which everyone's pitted against each other to see who can dance the longest. All but the winner collapse and even the winner is exhausted. Trouble is, I don't know what the answer is. Socialism is probably, net, worse.