How To Get Out Of The “High Potential Rut” And (Finally) Advance Into An Executive Leadership Position

Are you stuck in the “high potential rut?”

This is a phrase I coined to describe the phenomena of great corporate managers getting completely stalled in their careers.

It works like this:

First, you may get flagged as a high potential leader.

Congrats! 👏

That is an accomplishment you should be proud of. But…

As a result, your organization puts you through some training programs.

You’re exposed to different leadership principles, you learn how to motivate a team, how to think more strategically, and more.

But…you still struggle to get promoted.

So you work harder and keep doing what you’ve been doing.

Then the hours start piling up.

You get deeper and deeper into the weeds.

You focus on the details rather than the vision.

And…you still won’t land the promotion you want.

What gives?

This happens because your organization has given you the training programs you’ll need to be a better leader, but they haven’t shown you how to actually manage your career.

Here’s the solution:

My name is Stacy Mayer, and I coach corporate managers to get promoted into senior level executive positions. In this edition of Your Promotability Factor, I dive into the six core skills all leaders must develop if they want to take charge of their careers and scale themselves to the c-suite.

(PS. These are also the exact skills I teach in my brand new six-week group coaching intensive: Executive Ahead of Time. Go to to learn more.)

Skill #1: Get out of the weeds

When you’re worried about the wrong stuff and not speaking strategically, the leadership team is going to see you as a person who’s stuck in the details.

And while that might be fine for the role you already have, it’s certainly going to stop you from advancing to the next level.

And even if you do get promoted, being in the weeds is going to cause you to hit the wall hard and burn out.

Skill #2: 3x your vision

Most corporate managers think way too small when it comes to their careers.

This is a problem because you need to know where you want to go in order to start building the skills you’ll need to get there.

If you want to make it to the c-suite, you need to start thinking strategically, thinking long-term, and having a bigger vision, starting…NOW.

Skill #3: Manage your emotions

Emotional intelligence is important. You know that.

But most emotional intelligence training courses only teach you to notice and recognize emotions in others.

But I teach my clients how to manage their own emotions, too.


Because you need to understand your own emotions if you want to overcome your mental blocks, advocate for your career, and feel comfortable speaking up around the boardroom table.

Skill #4: Build trust

Communication is everything.

So you’ve got your emotions in check.

You’ve gotten out of the weeds.

Now it’s time to actually start advocating for yourself by communicating effectively and speaking to your organization’s vision.

Skill #5: Set meaningful goals

You’ve likely heard of smart goals.

But what’s critically important is that you set goals that are actually aligned with your values so you can stay true to yourself as you move into the executive suite.

Because when you have your values front and centre, it’s easier to map out the steps it’s going to take to get you to where you want to go AND continue to be successful once you get there.

Skill #6: Develop your c-suite mindset

I want you to ask yourself:

How do senior executive leaders think differently than I think right now?

Here’s the answer:

Senior executive leaders have learned how to measure and track their progress so they can land their next promotion – and beyond.

So can you.

So, now you know the skills you need to learn. Are you ready to master them?

If so, I highly recommend checking out my new program, Executive Ahead of Time. It’s the only executive coaching program that not only shows you exactly how to advocate for your next promotion WITHOUT spending years stuck in the same place — but how to be successful once you get there.

Learn more and enroll by going to

PS: If you have a question you’d like me to answer on one of my upcoming Your Promotability Factor Weekly Q&A, direct message me the answer to this question: “If you and I were to have 30-minutes together and you could get my input on anything, what specific questions would you have for me today, this week, this month?”

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