Whether You're a Company Director Going through a Merger, an Individual with Investment Qualms, or an Employee Suffering from Dwindling Self-Motivation, the Business Has Invited a Panel of Business Coaches to Answer Your Queries and Address Your Workplace Issues Head On

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Whether youre a company director going through a merger, an individual with investment qualms, or an employee suffering from dwindling self-motivation, The Business has invited a panel of business coaches to answer your queries and address your workplace issues head on. This weeks question is:

Whats the best way to improve my chances of promotion or double my salary? What qualities are employers looking for?

Steve Burnside

To identify what you need to work on, decide where you want to be five years from now. Pinpoint your ideal role and break down what it requires into categories such as skills and attributes. Compare these with your current profile. Then chart a plan for the next 12 months, highlighting projects that will help you fill in any gaps in your current experience

or else improve your profile by attending relevant courses or finding a suitable mentor.

Anyone assessing you can only judge you on verbal and non-verbal behaviour and communication patterns. Non-verbal communication is more important than verbal in relaying messages to others. So get feedback on how you come across. Be positive. Communicate clearly and concisely and consider other points of view and you will cultivate assertiveness and confidence.

Steve Burnside is director at the Centre of Personal Development where he helps individuals realise their full potential in the workplace.

Melinda Beckett-Hughes

Talent alone isnt enough. You need to cultivate great tactics too if you are to achieve any real results. It's not just about what you deliver, but about how you are seen - in other words, about how good you are about getting others to recognise and endorse your genius, without coming across as being too pushy or arrogant. Once you get on a roll with this, it becomes a virtuous circle.

Positive feedback will build your confidence, boosting not only your perspective and performance but your marketability and pay prospects too. If you can learn to make the right impact and develop good presence and gravitas, youre on the right track. The positive repercussions of this will help you stay focussed and get wherever you want to go.

Melinda Beckett-Hughes is managing director at Portland International (www.portlandinternational.com) coaching consultancy, working with companies and entrepreneurs to sharpen leadership and performance skills.

Ros Taylor

Be assertive. When tricky situations arise, volunteer to solve the problem rather than hesitating and waiting for someone else to jump in first. Rest assured that your efforts will be noticed if you are quick to offer and implement solutions in the face of a deadline.

Bosses generally regard good interpersonal skills as well as confidence and enthusiasm as the sign of a good employee. You might not like to be centre of attention all the time, but recognising the most appropriate times to show your skills off is vital. For example, meetings are a prime opportunity to demonstrate your worth, so sharpen up your presentation skills and make sure your superiors know that you exist. …