After a re-org, Ingrid’s team was moved into a different business unit, reporting in to a new leader. As a result, nobody knew who she was, or what she was responsible for. Ingrid’s new manager quickly recognized her as a star performer, worthy of a promotion, but this required selling the idea to a general manager who had no knowledge of Ingrid or her track record.
To make things even more complicated, Ingrid worked from home, managed a small global team, and rarely traveled to corporate headquarters.
Ingrid’s goal was to become visible to her team’s internal stakeholders and senior leaders, even though she worked remotely from them. Here are the five steps she took:
1.) Work less. Too many women make the mistake of thinking that if they just worked harder, they would get recognized. Unfortunately, their reputation gets buried under a thankless pile of work. To remedy this, Ingrid allocated a couple hours per week, not to work, but to activities that made her more visible.
3.) Know who’s who in the organization. With help from her mentor, Ingrid reviewed her business unit’s org chart and identified the key players and teams that she needed to get to know.
4.) Create a strategic networking plan. For every key person on her list, Ingrid identified a way to connect with them and build an authentic relationship. To do this, she arrived to teleconferences early to have time to small talk, made sure to prepare talking points and speak up during every teleconference, set up 20 minute phone calls with people she needed to get to know, scheduled ongoing check-in calls to strengthen working relationships, invited other managers to present in her staff conference calls (and vice versa), and created a team newsletter to update their stakeholders on monthly milestones. On the rare occasion that she visited HQ, Ingrid leveraged that time by using every available meal or coffee break to meet with key people.