DR. E. CAROL WEBSTER’S
E. Carol Webster, Ph.D.
Original Copyright © 2006
Self-promotion gets a bad rap. People make you feel like you’re being an egomaniac when you talk about your successes, but for the brave souls who try anyway, keep it up – you’re doing the right thing. Self-promotion is a key professional development skill. Others can’t reward you for your accomplishments or select you to do business with if they don’t know you and what you’re capable of delivering. Many of us were trained as children that it is unseemly to toot your own horn, so we wait to be acknowledged by superiors – secretly hoping that our successes will be recognized while resentment brews by the day as our achievements are ignored. But it’s important to realize that others are as busy as you are and, often, it’s not that they don’t care to know what you’re achieving – they’re just too preoccupied with other things to notice until you make it onto their radar screen. So help the process along. Take the risk and let them know.
Make Mention of Your Accomplishments
When you look good, your boss does too so make sure he or she knows the successes you’ve attained. Bring in the award you received, send a copy of the article written about you in your professional association magazine, or while at the water cooler just mention the fact that you were recently elected Chairperson of the Board of your local community organization. Send any news to your company’s communications department and let them decide if and where to run the information. And it’s fine if they decide to do nothing with it. You’ve done your job by making them aware of you and what you’re accomplishing. If you are in business for yourself, your customers want to know that they are working with the best, so keep them informed of the accolades you receive too. Include mention of this in your next newsletter, send out press releases, and display your awards proudly in your office. Yes, all of this feels like bragging – because it is – but how else is anyone to know why they should be exceptionally pleased and impressed with you versus another employee in the company or another business competitor in the community?
How Do Your Accomplishments Benefit Them?
While people generally will appreciate your success, they will feel even better about it if it has some relevance to them. This is usually the problem with self-promotion when you talk only about things that show how fast and far you’re moving along while causing others to feel like they’re being left in the dust. So add mention of how your accomplishment has some benefit to your department and/or to your manager’s priorities. Give credit to your team members if it was a group effort. How might your accomplishment help the company overall – particularly its bottom line? Let your customers know how obtaining a new credential, certification or award helps you to offer a new service or provide something better to them. How does it add to improving the quality of their life in some way? News of your increasing prosperity will be fine as long as your struggling customers feel that they will be benefiting in some way too.
Enjoy Your Success!
Many people downplay their successes because they’ve been slapped down by others previously, but don’t give in to this. You deserve to feel proud of yourself and should take the time to relish your achievements. Take yourself out to dinner if no one else plans a celebration for you. Let yourself smile when you look at your award and reflect upon the applause you received. The attainment of milestones and successes are important and should be treated with a little pomp and circumstance. Enjoy yourself.
Self-promotion need not be the cause for scorn and rejection. It can be done tastefully and sensitively in a manner that enables you to tout your success without feeling like you’re doing something wrong. Remember that as you fare well, others are likely to do so too, so take the time to tell them how. There’s no shame in self-promotion when it’s a win-win for all.
About the Author:
Dr. E. Carol Webster is a clinical psychologist consultant in Fort Lauderdale, FL.
She is author of the book for those dealing with the stress of success ―
Success Management: How to Get to the Top and Keep Your Sanity Once You Get There,
The Fear of Success: Stop It From Stopping You! ―
the book to help you overcome fears that may be holding you back in your life and career
The Private Practice of Clinical Psychology in: Voices of Historical & Contemporary Black American Pioneers
To contact Dr. Webster visit online at http://drcarolwebster.com or call 954.797.9766.
E. Carol Webster, Ph.D.
Clinical Psychology Consulting
Mailing Address: 7027 West Broward Boulevard, #262 Fort Lauderdale, FL 33317
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