May 9, 2022

Last Updated on January 15, 2024

As a cybersecurity professional, do you when your next promotion will happen? Do you know what you need to do to gain a promotion?

If you answered, ‘Say what?’ you’re in good company. No wonder so many cybersecurity pros job-hop. How else are they going to advance if there’s no clear path where they are?

Cyber talent thought leader Deidre Diamond, Founder and CEO at CyberSN, is out to change that. On a recent episode of The Virtual CISO Podcast, Deidre outlines 8 proven steps to retaining security talent.

Make sure it matters

Deidre’s “8 steps” are about creating what she calls an “inclusive” corporate culture. That is, an emotionally safe workplace where people feel cared for, especially by their managers.

Step #7 is: Make career promotion criteria outlined and transparent.

“If it’s not written down it doesn’t matter,” Deidre remarks. “So, make measurable agreements [about career advancement] with your boss and write them down and use them in your one-on-ones to make sure you’re still on the same page. And when they change, do change control: Document it, send it to the person, have them acknowledge it.”

Managing up

Staying in sync with your boss on career advancement is called “managing up.” Situational leadership training emphasizes this. It includes asking questions (e.g., about next steps), writing things down, making explicit agreements, helping your boss meet key goals, thinking “win-win” and so on.

Sometimes it’s characterized as “showing initiative” or “showing leadership.” But it’s a positive relationship. You’re keeping your manager informed/updated and helping them do their job.

“We all have to put our career in the hands of others at some point,” relates Deidre. “Do it wisely—help them help you.”

What’s next?

You’ll find the podcast episode with information security talent expert Deidre Diamond here.

Want to catch the first podcast with Deidre and John Verry? You’ll find it here: EP#2 Deidre Diamond – How to Attract & Retain Cyber Talent

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