Today there are more job opportunities available than ever before. Now it is really up to you to take control of your professional future and ensure success in career. In order to reach your full potential, you need to know the basic requirement for your career growth. You cannot go blindfolded in some direction and expect significant success in your career. Though your educational qualifications, present job or organization, experience, etc. may have some influence, your 'performance at work' is the most important factor that determines your future career growth.

Though some students of certain colleges may appear to get a break (job) easily, getting into such colleges and meeting the performance criteria of the college is difficult. Since the students from such colleges have demonstrated track record of performing consistently for years, it is assumed they will do the same in future.

Performance is not negotiable for good career:
It is an open secret that in any organization, only 30% of the people do 70% of total output. Organizations seek this kind of performers and nobody loses such performers in recession/layoff. The remaining people's work is not very result oriented and hence their job security is also bleak.

As GE (General Electronics) was reinventing itself as the world's most admired company in 1980s and 90s, it removed bottom 10% of its workforce (non-performers) every year. On the other hand, it appreciated the top performers with 2 to 4 times the incentives of an average performer.

Banks and Pharmaceutical industries hire employees and keep their job position off-roll for 2 years. Employees will get into on-rolls only if they perform well. Performance of a person is evaluated over a long period.

In Army, you will be promoted to next level only if you perform well, otherwise you will remain at a lower position. The lower your position, the earlier you retire. The situation is same in reputed consulting companies - it is 'Up or Out'. You should perform and go to next level; otherwise, you will be out. Typically only 1 in 5 gets promoted, the rest leave the organization.

Performance is the key factor:
When you buy something with your hard earned money, do you buy something that offers lower value and costs more? Especially, when you have an alternative that offers value at a lower cost? The business environment is extremely competitive and there is a place only for performers in the long run. If you perform well, you will definitely see a lot of career growth.

Career growth means climbing up the ladder in the organizational hierarchy. It includes acquiring higher level skills and competencies (that are difficult), handling more difficult challenges, ability to get better results for the company. In order to get these, you need to perform well at your role. You need to bring about more economic value addition.

If you are a performer, you will have access to more senior people in the organization, you will get more privileged information and you will have a chance to involve in planning and higher level of execution. You will also get opportunities to perform. All these help your career to progress well and come with better compensation.

However this career growth is not easy. For a certain number of people in junior role, there are far fewer senior level people. So, only a small number of people go to next level. Achievement, i.e., performance on your job responsibilities is the key parameter to go to next level. Career growth rewards/recognitions are given to those who clear the performance goals/targets by wide margin.

Performers will be recognized:
Good organizations are performing organizations. Some imbalances may exist for a year or two. As Warren Buffet says, good organizations perform 8 out of 10 years. Average companies perform 2 out of 10 years.

Performers never lose their value like teak tree. If you see, teak generally grows steadily but slowly. For the first seven years, it will have no or less value. As the years pass on, it grows stronger and stronger increasing its value. It may appear for a short time that performance does not pay. But in long run only performers will stay.

Experience is not a substitute for performance:
A person with less experience but better track record of performance is more likely to be hired, promoted or rewarded in a good organization.

If you are a performer, you will be definitely recognized by others. Your performance will show your strengths and capabilities. Performance is the key factor which helps you excel and reach great heights in your career.


  1. Definitely agree. When I was taking up pharmacy technician course, I was already constantly practicing what is expected of me even before I get my training done and get the right certification. Preparation is always important specially for those who have their first careers.