Here's something common that stops people from being promoted:
They "hang out" with the wrong people.
Maybe you've heard that old Jim Rohn quote: "You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with."
Many folks roll their eyes when they hear this -- and I'll admit, it is a bit of cliche -- but there's a lot of truth behind these words.
One of the best things you can do, right now, to dramatically increase your chances of being promoted is to start spending more time around leaders.
Two reasons: (1) the way they think about the things and see the world will start to rub off on you, and others (i.e. your boss) will notice; and (2) they can give you a leg up to the next rung on the career ladder, either by coaching you informally, making connections, or both.
How do you make friends and start "hanging out" with leaders?
First, volunteer for a company task force or special project. Most workplaces have at least one, such as a recruiting team, a green initiative, or a new product development. It could even be your company's party committee. They organize Christmas parties and stuff. I know that sounds funny. But. you'll not only demonstrate initiative and spend time around people who take action and make things happen, but you'll also gain access to higher level leaders, at least indirectly.
Second, serve in a volunteer leadership position in your community. One great one is to be on a non-profit board. Believe it or not, many executives and company directors also serve on these boards. You can build some powerful relationships, even friendships, and spend time around people who hold other positions of power in their "day job".
Getting a promotion just doesn’t happen overnight. Try brushing shoulders and hanging out with the leaders to get a glimpse of their perspective in life. You’ll be surprised how much you will be learning from them in the long run.