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The Art of Humble Bragging: Self-Promotion for the Modern Manager

In the bustling hallways of corporate, self-promotion often takes a backseat, generally stigmatized by societal norms that equate it to arrogance. This leaves many of us hesitant to highlight our own accomplishments. However, the art of 'humble bragging'—strategically showcasing your value while maintaining humility—is a skill that modern managers can't afford to overlook, especially as performance reviews loom on the horizon.

Why Self-Promotion is Necessary and How to Balance It?

Your work won't always speak for itself. In today's high-speed corporate environment, silence about your achievements can mean missed opportunities. Self-promotion isn't about ego; it's a crucial way to communicate your value to those who need to know. Striking a balance is key: you'll want to detail your contributions while connecting them to the larger goals of your team or organization. This way, you frame your achievements as part of collective success, maintaining both visibility and humility.

Strategies for Effective Self-Promotion

  • The E.A.R Method: Examples, Achievements, Results:  Don't just state your achievements—show them. Be prepared with specific examples, discuss the milestones reached, and always corroborate your statements with data or measurable outcomes.

  • The Value-Add Approach: Establish yourself as a problem solver. Discover gaps and inefficiencies, then take steps to correct them. Make it a point to communicate how these initiatives positively affect the organization.

  • The Humble Brag: Networking and Personal Triumphs: In professional settings, finesse the 'humble brag' to subtly showcase your achievements, while aligning them with the team's collective success. However, don't hold back in personal settings—own your accomplishments with pride and say, "Yes, I did this and I'm proud of it!"

Three Actionable Tips for Effective Self-Promotion

You've heard this one before: make sure you are documenting your successes and accomplishments and also hold regular check-ins with your manager. But here are three tips that are going to elevate your self-promotion game:

  • Leverage Linkedin: share your milestones regularly and engage in meaningful industry discussions to subtly showcase your expertise.

  • Master the Elevator Pitch: prepare a concise, 30-second spiel that encapsulates your value and recent successes.

  • Seek Testimonials: solicit endorsements from colleagues and supervisors to bolster your claims in performance reviews or on professional platforms.

As you approach the year-end evaluations, embrace the art of humble bragging. Done right, it not only elevates your professional standing but also fosters a more collaborative and transparent workplace. So, shine your own light—because if you don't, who will?

About the Author

Natasha Tous, Founder and CEO of Luminaria (weareluminaria), develops rising leaders who want to grow their leadership skills to break into executive leadership positions. She also serves on the Board of Women In Toys, Licensing & Entertainment. Connect with Natasha on Linkedin: @natashatous



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