Today, we’re talking about knowing when you have hit a glass ceiling. I’ve had a lot of conversations with people who feel that they’ve accomplished all that they can in their current position. They can’t seem to get a promotion and move up in their career.  This is known as the glass ceiling effect, don’t be believe the hype, there’s a glass ceiling at your company. There is maximum position that you can achieve.  Not everyone can be CEO. For some it’s higher than others. Unfortunately, it’s not fair, but life’s not fair. Some folks create their own glass ceiling and it’s pretty low. Here’s what happens.

  1. You have a poor attitude. I said it before; no one wants to work with a jerk. No matter how talented you are, if you are not a nice person, you will not move too far.
  2. You are unprofessional, I made this separate because I’ve seen nice folks but they do not know how to behave in a professional setting. They tend to say something or do something that is off-putting or awkward.  I’ve seen this happen and the person just doesn’t know better.
  3. You feel entitled, entitlement is a killer, once you feel that you deserve anything, and shouldn’t have to work on it; career suicide.
  4. You are detached; you just don’t care. You do the minimum amount of what’s asked of you.
  5. You are a kiss up; no one likes a brown noser, a yes man/woman. You have no opinion or anything constructive to add to the situation.

You may see jerks and brown nosers get a promotion or two, and that may be enough for them however they will never make it to the pinnacle.

Now let’s say you are a good person, hard worker, difference maker, well educated, team player, but still you just can’t get over the hump. Well it happens, here are some signs you are experiencing a glass ceiling by no fault of your own.

  1. The company’s organization culture is set to where you work until retirement and then the next tenured person takes over. This happens in most government or state (public) employers.
  2. The company is having financial problems. Hiring freezes, reorganizations, buyouts, mergers, lots of confusion, work force reductions, and wage freezes.  There may be lateral movement but not too many promotions happen during this time.
  3. The boss; you just don’t see eye to eye.  You don’t have to have fights, or arguments, could just be a weird relationship. We call that fit, you just don’t fit.
  4. You’re looked over for promotions with little to no explanation. “It’s not you, we found someone who is more qualified or a better fit” Uh yeah, if this happens more than once, it may be time to go.
  5. You’re not challenged in your position and you see no career pathing. You can do the job in your sleep. You want more of a challenge, but there is not one available. Dust off the resume.

It’s tough making a decision to move forward to another company. We get so invested in our companies and out titles that we become emotionally tied to our job. Leaving is like leaving family, some compare it to a death in the family.  Remember you have to make the best decision for you and your real family. You can stay connected through social media now. So it’s not goodbye, it’s so long for now.