09 Apr Why You Should Chase Skills And Not Titles
It’s natural to be attracted to job titles that reflect authority, a sense of autonomy, and have a feeling of things- are- under-my-control. It’s almost like a perk that you receive on a daily basis when you’re promoted to a VP of marketing or a business director of a company. Think paycheck! Think a gorgeous workstation or a cubicle all for yourself! Think authority! Think delegation! Isn’t this an aspiration we all have somewhere deep inside?
It is truly aspirational – and fundamentally desired like I said.
But somewhere what can balance the (sometimes irrational) excitement and thrill of leading a company is with a consistent set of skills that when put to execution justifies the role in question; which, in a way, is more practically appetizing, so to say.
Let’s face it: who doesn’t want a promotion? And the blatant reality is that we all want it quickly and seamlessly. Today’s work culture beckons people who can work 70+ hours non-negotiable – and take a fat paycheck home. And so, they want a better title to lead, make more money, and then enjoy a drink with their loved ones. Well, I am with you when you work so hard on your business skills relevant to the job and then earn your much-coveted and desired promotion.
But there are a quite a few of us who are so fixated on the prize (that is the promotion) and forget about what it actually takes to reach there.
Upon reading an Inc piece by Peter Economy on 5 exceptionally powerful ways millennials succeed at work, the 5th point speaks so starkly clear about today’s work age – and that is, ‘people get so focused on what they should do that they lose sight of what they could do’. It takes much more than just a foresight; it takes the immense practice of skills and constant updation of knowledge in our said fields to take reins of a big title with a promotion.
Instead of thinking what you want from a job or your career, focus on the how and acquire those requisite skills to get there. Via focusing on upgrading your skills, even though you lose you big position in a company for any given reason, you can always get a role that complements your skills. For example, if you are promoted with a title of Sales director but you don’t have the arsenal of skills – especially learning agility – to crush your monthly quota, then that title will be of no use and will have no significance to fast-track your career in sales. However if you learn more about closing sales – be it from your mentor, coach, audio books or by practicing the nuances of pitching, you will slowly develop an insight of how to crack open into new clients without having any big title to your name to support your monthly paycheck. The truth is that boy, you will be in demand because of your skills and not your position!
As is the case with any other profession.
Chasing relentless learning of new skills will pave your way to bigger titles, responsibilities and a handsome paycheck.
Don’t limit yourself to a big title, advance your skills to lead your way to a bigger role.
Design your success with your skills – that way position, role, promotion and pay raise will follow.