Why it's important to remain visible in a hybrid working model - now more than ever!

career development confidence building work life harmony working parents Jul 06, 2021
People networking

We all know that networking and being visible at work is a key enabler for advancing and expanding your career. We also know that eating healthy foods, exercising, practicing mindfulness is also critical for a long and healthy life….but how often do we make this a priority?!

Having worked with many corporate clients to enable caring and career, we know that for individuals with caring responsibilities, networking and building your sphere of influence is often way down the priority list.

Often, as working parents, the focus is exclusively on completing the work-family life to-do list in the most efficient way - no time for small talk!

Our default is to sit down at the desk and work like a Trojan, without stopping or even daring to accept a lunch (virtual or real) invitation because you have an absolute deadline – crèche/kita/school/teenager taxi pick up... It’s not a deadline that can be moved by even an hour or two – you have to meet it. Sound familiar?

The impact of COVID-19 has added more complexity with so many of working from home, and there are even fewer opportunities to have those spontaneous and informal conversations around the coffee machine/water cooler.

Maybe you had focused on networking before the pandemic hit, and you were often the one suggesting after-work drinks, lunches in the park.. but the last 12 months has probably clipped your sociable wings.

So, what is the cost of being invisible?

  • You become excluded from the circles where decisions are made that can often impact career choices and development opportunities
  • You lose the opportunity to make your potential visible to others

Even if you are making a choice to not leap into a leadership role in the coming months, it is important to continue to build the relationships necessary to gain visibility and access to key stakeholders.

It is this circle of people who will think of you and speak for you - they are the ones influencing resourcing choices for the business.

Even without the above-mentioned obstacles, we can often get in our own way and hold ourselves back from creating conversations and connections.

Be aware of limiting beliefs that often trip us up:

  • “I don’t like promoting myself/showing off” – you can promote yourself with integrity and in line with your values by attaching any self-promotion to results and successes. If the success was a team effort, promote the whole team.
  • “I’m an introvert” - another common limiting belief is that networking is only for extroverts. Not true. Quality is more important than quantity. As in-person meetings start to open up in some countries, knowing how to ‘work’ a room is helpful but if in doing so, you feel uncomfortable and therefore don’t present your ‘best self’, don’t do it. One-on-one conversations are equally powerful and a great way to build strong relationships.
  • “I have too much work to do to network” - be clear on what is important for you at this moment in time and put boundaries in place to maintain those priorities whilst staying curious and in touch with the wider picture. Being able to say “no” to those activities that do not align with your goals but would add to your volume of work/pressure is key to staying focused and not becoming overwhelmed.
  • “I am too shy” - if you feel shy, look at other resources and ideas which may help you to build your muscle here. During the pandemic, there are so many virtual networking events outside where you can gain confidence outside of work. Also, consider groups/training where you improve your skills and confidence at speaking out.
  • “It’s not worth it as I can’t commit the time due to caring responsibilities” - parents who are the primary carers often share that the timing is not right to even consider leadership roles/promotion, so they opt out. We are busy working with organisations to help them create the best ecosystem to empower carers and enable #caringandcareer AND it also starts with you. Dare to dream and be curious as to what small steps you can take to stay visible.

Join us at our complimentary Building Visibility & Your Sphere Of Influence webinar on Tuesday, 13 July 2021 at 12:00 CEST to gain clarity and tools on how to easily and efficiently build visibility and spheres of influence so that you can advance your career. Book your free seat. 

Our next Empower Your Future Professional Development Programme starts on 2nd September 2021. It's a development programme that manageably fits within your schedule and immediately makes an impact, focusing on career advancement that's more compatible with your personal values and family commitments. Click here to sign up.

You can also sign up for our monthly espresso-shot style newsletter below to hear about future webinars and events we are planning to host.

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