I had a great conversation with an outstanding young leader in Chicago this week. He’s a high potential employee who is working to expand his leadership capacity. And he’s hoping for a promotion this year. If you or someone you know are in the same boat, make certain to keep reading.
Too many employees work hard all year only to be disappointed when they are passed over for a promotion. They complain about the “unfairness” of the situation. They defend themselves and they feel embarrassment that they didn’t get what they were hoping for. Perhaps they just don’t understand:
Once you realize and accept that fact, here are three important steps that you can take.
“You don’t get paid for the hour, you get paid for the value you bring to the hour.” That Jim Rohn quote reminds all of us that employers want more than work, they want for results. I’ve had countless conversations with employees about areas for improvement. Sometimes they’re “shocked.” They want to share areas where they believe they are excelling. But those were not the important areas to me. What’s best for the company?
If you want to get promoted, tell your boss. Your boss isn’t a mind reader. Some people don’t get promoted because their supervisor didn’t know they really wanted to. You think all people want to be promoted, right? That’s definitely not the case! It’s important for your boss to know so she can let you know what skills and behavior will be needed for the next level. But she doesn’t know—that’s her fault. See this new Harvard Business Review article to see why you should always let others know.
Redefine Above & Beyond. SPOILER ALERT! Bosses do NOT promote the hardest worker! The exception would be if the new position required an incredibly hard worker. Usually supervisory slots require management skills and (super excellent) people skills. Here is the BIG PAYOFF: ALWAYS remember that executives promote for their reasons, not yours!
You’re only a question or two away from excelling in this area. Be consistently asking these two questions:
- “What is most important and meaningful to my boss right now?
- “What extra work can I do to move the company forward?”
THE BOTTOM LINE: Many people want to get promoted—but most of them never will. At least not until they stop seeing everything from their own perspective. Bring value, tell your boss about your aspirations, and redefine “Above & Beyond.” If you do those three things you’ll set yourself up for a great 2017!