Global Leadership Blog

Global Self Promotion

How to Self-promote (Globally) Without Being Obnoxious

Nowadays, self-promotion is almost synonymous with getting ahead. It can show your boss you’re ready for more opportunities. When done right, it can show your team you’re their advocate.

Doing it should be a dedicated task, particularly in large global organizations. People don’t know what you’re up to and what you’ve accomplished unless you tell them. This can be true, in some cases, even with your immediate boss and team.

You need to create opportunities for visibility. {TWEET THIS}

But the global aspect of our business world can be a double-edged sword. While it makes it a must to promote your work, it also makes it tricky to do so. Different cultures view self-promotion differently. In the U.S., people tend to admire the “skill” of being self-confident and the ability to tout your own successes. In Europe, on the other hand, self-promotion can be seen as distasteful. If you’re going to boast, you better boast about how your actions benefited others. In Asia, the collectivist mindset means self-promotion is more akin to talking about the accomplishments of the team and company overall.

Because most of us are working globally, we need to master the art of self-promotion so that it’s done in a way that is tasteful, increases our credibility, and makes ourselves, teams, and bosses look good across cultures.

So, here are three ways to do that:

Focus on results. When speaking of your success or actions, talk about the impact on your team. How many customers did you attract? How much money was made? What changes, developments, or innovations were caused because of what you and your team worked on?

Create opportunity for visibility. Write articles, blogs, or make videos about you, your team or company’s success. Look for speaking opportunities on panels or at conferences to talk about what you did. Conferences, in particular, love to hear real-world examples from people in the trenches.

Don’t forget to network. Consider spending 10-20 percent of your time on targeted networking. Targeted networking means you identify those useful to your career, team, or boss, and create opportunities to link up. Invite them to team meetings, host events, have lunches and happy hours, and spend time chatting.

The global nature of our business world has lent itself to flatter structures which means we can no longer rely on top management to do the promotion of individuals and teams. We need to be advocates for ourselves. So get comfortable and learn the authentic, genuine ways to promote the good work you and your team are doing.

Image Credit: ryanking999 / 123RF Stock Photo

Melissa Lamson

About The Author

Melissa Lamson, Founder and President of Lamson Consulting, is an author, consultant, and speaker who accelerates the business expansion goals of today’s most successful companies by developing global mindset, refining leadership skills, and bridging cross cultural communication.
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