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How can you get raises and promotions in a tight economy ? Here are five ways to get ahead:

1. Take Charge

These days, job search necessitates self-promotion (sometimes momentary, shameless episodes in extreme circumstances) to "close the sale" (convince the employer to hire you) so use this as an opportune time to express your voice with clarity and highlight your achievements. The idea reminds me of an article I read a few years back with something resembling "eight words to say to your boss." The strategy? You take charge by reminding the boss about your achievements and accomplishments. (All the more reason to create six month and one year milestones of what you have achieved in terms of value to the employer). My mind escapes me on the reference, but in my hobbled nocturnally infused mind, I believe it was humanresources.about.com. In a word, modesty takes refuge in a fiercely competition market for talent, not skills, employers so eagerly desire.

2. Dress For Success

At first glance, this may seem like a trite or moot point, but your mind would be dumbfounded by the number of employees, job candidates and interview prospects who don't take the time to demonstrate confidence... in the physical presence. Let us not forget that 93% of our communication is non-verbal. A well coiffed, well presented employee with amount of common sense should dictate clothes portray our brand name imaging to employers. (Younger job seekers can reference this on today's New York Times web site on how college graduates ought to dress for the job search.)

3. Avoid Gossip

Words need not be wasted on such a reckless, vicious human activity that poisons the work environment. Don't be seduced by its venom!

4. Be Creative

My longstanding refrain is the one track mind that employers have: can you make me money or can you save me money? If you cannot quantify these two precepts of business, then consider the alternatives: can you/did you improve something at work? Did you increase efficiency by doing something? Do you employer your consultative abilities and scan the workplace and envision something that needs a mainstream overhaul. Resume tip: Make your content 70/30 (hint: Use this formula with the last point). Call me or e-mail me for more info on how you can captivate employers' and potential employer's attention by following this powerful strategy. If you are still at a loss to how you can improve the bottom line, go deeper and engage in the mindset of a consultant. Get feedback about what's going well and what can be changed and/or improved. Engage in active listening, get some results and present them to the boss. You are responsible for your career report card. No one else.

5. Stay Late And Come In Early

If you're willing to make the commitment to the employer, you may well be rewarded. And this defies the idea of presenteeism entirely! It is possible for great employees to get raises and promotions in a tight economy, as long as those employees are deliberate and consistent in their actions. Photo Credit: Shutterstock
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