When you’ve been working at a company for a certain amount of time, you might think to yourself every now and then: ‘What now?’
Most of us don’t want to be doing the same job for years on end without the assurance of knowing that a promotion may be heading your way if you work hard enough. However, promotions can be few and far between, and you may need to do some work on your end to give the process a little extra push. Read on to see our tips on how to give your career that boost!
Are you in a management position?
Do you currently provide support for or train others, even if your job title doesn’t say ‘supervisor’, ‘manager’ or ‘director’? Are you, essentially, responsible for the work that others do? If so, perhaps this is enough credit for you to deserve a promotion.
How proactive are you?
Does your manager ever prompt you to do your job? Do you always need chasing up on things you’re responsible for every day? If you do, you need to sort out how proactive you are in the workplace before considering raising the topic of promotion. Try to think of new ideas on how your job can be improved, how things can be less expensive for your company or ways you can innovate what you currently do. Try to get involved with new tasks as much as possible (as long as they’re relevant to your role)
If things in your job aren’t challenging and there’s a gap where your role could possibly take on more work (for hopefully more pay!) then you could be in line for a promotion soon. If you don’t find things challenging and you’re struggling to make your role more stimulating, don’t moan about your job. Continue to do a great job but highlight the slightly unnecessary simplicities to your manager when it’s appropriate.
When you get into a role that has more salary, you’ll have more responsibility and ultimately be more liable if things go wrong. Try to predict what sort of things you’d be responsible for and how you’d deal with certain issues. If you get an interview for a promotion at your company, you’ll be likely asked how you’d deal with certain scenarios.
Relationships with others
This can be tricky one when trying to get a promotion. Have you got on the wrong side of anyone lately? Start to evaluate any work relationships that may have gone awry and look at improving them. These people may be your new colleagues or subordinates, and if they don’t like you they won’t support you in your potential new role. They may even prevent it from happening if they’re asked for feedback on what it might be like working with you. On the other hand, do you have any special relationships you can utilise? If you get on particularly well with a member of staff in the area you’re looking to move to, you might be able to cash in a favour for a good word.
Are you up to the task?
You might think you know how the job would go, but you’re likely to be given more responsibility than you think, you need to know the ins and the outs of the job more than someone external (but equally qualified). Are there any specific things you know about the job that’s invaluable, such as content management systems or other things that make the job easier?
How much training and continuous professional development have you had? This is a fairly obvious question, but if there’s something that’s essential to being part of the new team like a qualification or level of experience, you need to make sure you’ve got it. Sometimes, you might be allowed to undertake the training required whilst being in the new post, provided that you complete it in a set timeframe. Don’t let something like this put you off; you should still try to land the promotion and let your manager (or whoever the decision maker is) aware that you know what training you need.
You should always make sure that you’re well-connected. This goes back to the point of being aware of your relationships, but also emphasises the need to build new ones. Listen to your new network. What problems might they have? Can you solve them? Make sure you’re aware either way of any issues that you’ll have to deal with in your prospective new role so you can get to know the right people in advance who may be able to help you later on.
Do your research
Does your company promote/move people around often? Similar to asking for a pay rise, you need to make sure you’ve done your research. Why have previous colleagues left? Is the role a brand new ‘experiment’ being undertaken by the employer? When it comes to the expected salary, research wages of similar roles in other companies. Be sure to take into account location too. You should do research into your own role history too. Take down facts and successes that would help your argument for a promotion. Did you raise sales by 30% in the past six months? Facts like these are usually quickly forgotten after they’ve been briefly celebrated.
Do the typical stuff too
When trying to get a promotion, the basics work too. Make sure you’re always on time, try to go the extra mile for your team when you can and be reliable. Don’t try and get a promotion based on the fact that you dislike your current role. Get involved with meetings that you’d usually miss and networking events.
Get to know people you don’t normally work with
Even if you won’t be involved with these people if you get a promotion, getting to know other colleagues can prove to be really invaluable. You’ll get information on parts of the company you may not know about and you’ll make good work connections at the same time. There might even be a position available in their department that you normally wouldn’t have considered.
Most of these pointers may be fairly obvious, but if you adhere to as many of them as possible, you can guarantee you’ve done your best to get a promotion at work. Sometimes, it won’t go your way, but it’ll be nothing to do with you. Maybe your employer has changed their mind or they need to rethink the structure of the team. Don’t be put off by this – keep doing what you’re doing and you’ll continue to get noticed at work for another promotion that may be just around the corner!