Landing A Promotion Requires More Than Just Hard Work

22 Apr 2015

Do you enjoy your job? Are you building your career? Are you keen to move up the business ranks, take on a new title, more responsibility, learn new things and take home more pay? Are you busting your hump, but not getting anywhere?

Don’t worry, you are not alone, many ambitious and determined employees find it hard to get a promotion and often it has very little to do with what they are doing right, but more so to do with what they are not doing.

1. Do A Stellar Job
Actual job performance is integral if you ever want to be a considered for a promotion, so tick this box first. First impressions count, so start there and WOW them from the interview stage. Turn up on time, dress appropriately, once in the job integrate into the work culture and attend business functions and industry events. Give your thoughts on industry trends and things affecting the business. Don’t behave badly at work functions, or over-share, stay professional, yet courteous and friendly. Whatever you do, don’t self-sabotage.

2. Be A Problem Solver & Take Feedback Well
Some bosses love employees who come to them with solutions, not just problems they expect management to solve. Taking the initiative shows intelligence, critical thinking ability and ambition. You should also listen to feedback and make notes when it’s evaluation time, or just off-the-cusp performance obsrvations. Don’t be defensive, acknowledge any concerns and admit if you knowingly made a mistake. If you truly need help with improving in a certain area of your work performance ask for guidance. Do your best to improve on at least one thing each day. Make it a habit.

3. Don’t Bad-Mouth or Gossip
Stay professional at all times. Don’t say anything at all negative about your place of employment, not to anyone. If things go south, you will always wonder if it had anything to do with you opening your big mouth. It’s not worth the risk and will definitely get you suspended, or fired if it gets back to your boss.

4. Make Sure You Have the Skills to Perform the Promotion Job Properly in the First Place
You might be a whizz in your current position, but do you have the skills necessary to carry out the extra duties which would come with a promotion? Your suitability for promotion is not just based on how well you perform your current job, but whether you have the abilities needed if you were bumped up the corporate ladder. Remember many employers want job-ready employees and are scaling back on investing in training. In most cases today, the onus is on the employee to up-skill.

5. Don’t Forget About Improving & Showcasing Your Soft Skills to Employers
Soft skills are self-management and people skills. They encompass: communication and networking skills, teamwork and leadership skills, likeability, emotional self-control and self-awareness, confidence, resilience and patience. Such attributes mean you are better able to create collaborative win-win outcomes.

6. Build Bridges
Network with your colleagues and other industry people; attend industry events and so on. Be good to your workmates, greet them when you arrive, offer to grab them a drink if you are getting yourself one. It’s the little things that count, thoughtfulness is a rare commodity these days, extending it to other colleagues may see them put in a good word for you come promotion time. Few things are more valuable when moving up the career ladder than keeping the respect and loyalty of your team. 

7. Be Assertive
If you have done all you can to get a promotion, but still no word from your boss, then perhaps it’s time to be assertive. Often all it takes is letting your boss now that you would be interested and ready to move up in the company to open up the lines of communication and consideration. They may just be totally unaware of your ambitions so speak frankly and respectfully, put your cards on the table and explain why you feel you deserve a promotion. Make sure you keep it short and sweet. 

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