Forget university. Forget very expensive mid-life MBA’s. There are 3 very clear, relatively easy steps that will guarantee you significant success in your career.
1. According to research done at Harvard Business School, striking a “power pose” raises testosterone levels by an average of 20% and lowers cortisol by a similar amount. The study is titled “Power Posing: Brief Nonverbal Displays Affect Neuroendocrine Levels and Risk Tolerance”. So, get in front of that mirror and start learning how to walk more powerfully, sit in powerful poses and project a more powerful image.
2. Flattery gets you everywhere! In a study conducted by Jennifer Chatman at the University of California, Berkeley, she set out to discover if there was a level at which flattery stops working – and found that there wasn’t one. Lay it on as thickly as you possibly can. The thicker you pile it on the more it works, with everyone. Think about it, when was the last time when someone flattered you, did you say “Cut the bullshit”. The more they flattered you the more you were made to feel good about yourself.
3. Manage upwards. This is a study done by myself. I have work for an American corporation for 10 years and the people who are clearly bloody useless at delivering anything, but spend their time managing upwards are always successful. I have witnessed folks who you wouldn’t employ to make sandwiches, rise to heady heights because they spent their entire careers managing upwards.
So in summary, focus on the org chart above you, learn everything you can about the key folks above you, use every single opportunity that you can to flatter them (triple the amount that you would feel is publicly acceptable) and whenever you are in their presence, power pose. Thats it. The only thing that will undermine this strategy is if you really are a complete moron.