Every professional involved in employment wants their job promotion. Getting promoted is not only an opportunity to work in a new position but also an indicator of success, sense of accomplishment and getting closer to the ultimate career goals. But different people have different experiences in their professional journey.

For some people, it is an easy and joyful experience. For some others, it is a very painful process that takes a really long time and becomes a source of anxiety and depression.

This guide is primarily focused on skills for job promotion, how to say you are ready and looking for promotion opportunities and how to capitalize on every promotion opportunity and turn them into reality.


1. Preparing Yourself for Job Promotion from the First Day of your Employment

Getting a job promotion can be a very simple and joyful experience if you can prioritize and focus on some of the simple things from the very beginning of your employment.

To understand how to accomplish career progression and extra responsibilities in an easy and joyful way, you need to understand some of the skills, habits and strategies that can be used to get ready for promotion opportunities. Below are the most important aspects that you can focus on for your career progression.

1.1  Develop Your Career Goal,

The most important aspect of job promotion is the career goal, if you have clarity on your career goals you will be able to focus consistently on the required knowledge, skills, relationship and behavior to reach the goals. If you are not sure about your career goal, you will have a lot of confusion, you will be unsure about which learning opportunities, skills and relationship prioritize and which one to deprioritize.

Many people think that career goals refer to the aspiration for a bigger job, but it is much more than that. Having clarity on career goals also includes a clear understanding of what you want to be, what knowledge and skills do you need for that and how can you realistically reach that point.

If you have a longer-term career goal or shorter-term job promotion, one of the most important things is to see the role and visualize as clearly as possible thinking about every aspect of the details and start shaping your behavior accordingly. You don’t need to work hard on a single day, but you must do something small but important towards that journey every day. This will make the impossible possible.

1.2  Educate Yourself: Learn and Grow

Education is a very important aspect of career progression. Here, education does not only mean a university degree but also keeping yourself up to date in the knowledge and skills relevant to your job.

In order to make sure that you have the required knowledge and skills and are among the top-performing staff in the organization/company, you can develop a regular schedule for learning, explore the appropriate learning opportunities, familiarize yourself with the required technology, and reflect on the areas of strengths and weaknesses.

Make sure you when a natural opportunity arises proactively demonstrate your skills through action, and plan how you can improve your weaknesses so that it is not counted against your personal and professional qualities.

1.3  Find a Mentor

Mentoring is not only about learning technical knowledge and skills, it is about getting someone to broaden your connection, learn the professional culture and getting matured in the professional journey you have already embarked in.

Mentors can help you to better organize, make the best use of the relationship and showcase your work performance and to highlight your strengths and achievements which might be much easier if done by someone else than by yourself.

1.4  Boost Your Creativity and Be Innovative

Every company wants its employees to be innovative. Being innovative can accelerate the overall company performance, it can help the company get rid of the chronic problems and issues and it can provide you an opportunity to celebrate and feel proud of yourself, which will, in turn, be a reason for confidence, good relationship and relationship with the senior leaders, managers and partners, which will ultimately strengthen the possibility for the career advancement.

1.5  Develop and Demonstrate Leadership Qualities

Leadership is the most important quality that you need to possess in order to secure accelerated professional development and career growth. The level of influence demonstrates your leadership qualities.

The higher in the hierarchy you reach the more important the leadership skills are for your career advancement. This is because the performance of senior leaders is mainly dependent upon the work performance of the people behind them.

In order to get the best performance from the team members soft skills such as motivating others, influencing their decisions and choices, strengthening relationships and supporting the team to develop a healthy working culture is very important. You need to have leadership skills to influence others.

Sometimes you will have to make hard decisions, for these leadership skills are very important, which may include the ability to convince and influence others, ability to take risks, ability to articulate the needs confidently, ability to make quick judgments and response, ability to manage emergencies, and so on.

1.6  Build Positive Impression and Professional Relationship

Relationships are important in every step of life; job promotion is not an exception. Job promotion decisions are usually taken by the people you know well, if the decisions are being made by the people you know well, their perception of you as an individual and a staff member will count in the final outcome of the decision. If you have a great positive relationship, this will knowingly and unknowingly influence the judgment.

This does not mean the management will be biased but this means that human nature will rate the work performance in context, the same action by two different individuals may be considered bold or overambitious and you certainly want to be bold, not overambitious. For this, you need to build a positive impression and relationship.

The positive impression and relationship are not only related to senior management, but also about the other colleagues including the people you may be managing, these are the ambassadors who will promote you every day without being asked to do that if they have positive impressions and relationships.

But if the impression and relationship are negative, they will certainly be highlighting your weaknesses and limitations again in a very natural way which may create the biggest challenge in your career advancement.  

1.7  Be Efficient

In general, companies keep their employees busy. Every individual will frequently pass through the instance when they are required to perform best in a relatively short period of time.

If you can do this better than any others in your team, then you will surely be appreciated more, demanded and preferred more and respected more in the company, all of which are fundamentals for getting a job promotion.

Efficiency is a single great quality, that is dependent on many other qualities including active listening, attention to the details, concentration, best use of the technology, ability to get other support.

So, try these skills in everyday practice, if these things are not your natural qualities, you can make them by regular practice. For this you need commitment, continuity and patience.

As Tara Jaya Frant said, ‘People don’t get promoted for doing their jobs really well, they get promoted for their potential to do more’. Efficiency gives management the ability to develop trust in you.

1.8  Keep Calm and Patient

Daily hassles are a significant drawback for many people. If you have issues in keeping calm and patient, this may be counted against the journey of your job promotion and delay the outcome if it does not make it impossible for you. So, learn to keep yourself calm and patient before this ruins your opportunity to get a promotion.

Impatience is the result of stress and frustration therefore, in order to manage your impatience, you need to deal with the triggers that are causing stress and frustration. This may be a feeling of vulnerability, this may be because of not being able to refresh yourself.

You can also try some simple techniques of relaxation such as deep breathing, slow movement, body relaxation can be helpful.

1.9  Manage Your Emotions at Work

Emotional stability is something everyone wants and prioritizes. The workplace emotions can be managed by developing simple habits:

  Humanity and Respects: We all are human, so, respect not for the work of your colleagues but the colleagues themselves. They may have made the biggest mistakes but feel as if you might have been from your side. This will change the overall perspectives and your behavior. After all, you can do something together to respond without reacting to the situation.

  Nothing is as Serious as Losing Emotional Stability: Remember, how big they are, the things that you are feeling stressed about are simply a very small part of the bigger picture of your life and career. And as long as you as an individual are aware of it, you can do something positive.

  Work on Your Habits: Remember the stress, worry, nervousness, anger all these emotions will harm you than benefit. Every time you have emotional issues you can make a habit of thinking this. This will transform your habits.

All these simple steps if practiced in everyday life, emotional stability will be a greater advantage for you than limitation which will count positively in your career progression.

1.10    Positive and Supportive Attitude

Getting a higher position is also having more responsibilities for the company and staff, so the positive and supportive attitude counts as much as efficient ways of working and influencing the company procedures. Attitude is the outcome of what you think, so develop positive thinking.

Learn not to react but to respond, not to blame but anticipate such a situation and prevent it. If you can do it without hurting relationships with other people, without hurting their feelings, you will certainly have an excellent relationship which will immensely help you with the job promotion.

1.11    Be Strategic

Working hard certainly counts but strategic work counts more. Therefore, everyone wants to be strategic in their workplace, but it is important to know what it means to be strategic before you can understand how to be strategic.

Being strategic is knowing one strength, limitations, future aspiration market demands and shaping the behavior, action and priorities suitable for the same. To be strategic you need to focus on the following aspects:

  Anticipate Future Needs: If you are relevant to future needs you will be more and more relevant every day, so the company investment today will not only be returned for today but for a longer term. If you can anticipate future needs and articulate in your company you will certainly be the person in top demand soon.

  Understand the Organization’s Holistic Priority and Aspiration. As an employee it is very important to understand the organization’s bigger picture and contribute to that bigger picture which will certainly be very strategic for your professional growth.

  Speak Strategically: Communication is very important for strategic moves, understanding the audience, their background, values and interest can help you shape your communication in strategic ways. This does not mean tell what your audience fancy to listen to, but prepare a reasonable background and present it in a positive way that can minimize the possibility of criticism and can have a positive influence on others.

1.12    Confidence

Many people have excellent ideas on what works and what does not work, but they step back to articulate it in the right place because they lack confidence, which ultimately limits their visibility and level of influence in the company. While such people will be highly admired by their colleagues in informal contexts, it might be hard for them to cash the job promotion.

Therefore, developing self-confidence, using this at the right time and in the right place is not only useful to convince your boss you are ready for promotion but also useful for you to develop a strong professional impression of your-self. Below are some top tips for developing confidence:

  Think Long Term: long term thinking will help you get rid of short-term distraction and struggle with what people will say, think or how they respond but help you to focus more on how it contributes positively and effectively. It allows you to concentrate and remain focused on your priorities in spite of the immediate distraction which is key to success.

  Monitor Your Progress and Celebrate: monitor your progress, understand what the biggest achievement was and what pulls you back. This will help you to focus more on the success factors and improve the distractions. This is very important for career progression.

  Keep Going: Failures and hard times are unavoidable in our life, keep working on your mission on a regular basis. This is important to achieve access which ultimately contributes to our confidence.

  Celebrate: As a human, we need recognition for our work, and the best person who knows how much you have achieved you, so allocate some time to celebrate for your accomplishments. This will change your psychology in unknowing ways and also showcase your achievements with others which is equally important for confidence.

1.13    Be Competitive in Market

It is said that the other side of the grass looks greener, so it is important for you to understand the job market and the skills and qualifications available and highlight your competitive skills and qualifications. keep yourself ready to compete with the other individual looking for opportunities.

Reflect on your strengthens and how you communicate in your workplace, sometimes the people in the labor market may have a better academic qualification which can be compensated with the on the job training opportunities or self-study together with experience which will be unbeatable in the market place which will make your career advance experience joyful and smooth.


2. Telling Your Boss: You Need Promotion

It is not always an easy and straightforward way to tell your boss or management that you need a promotion. For this, you need to create an appropriate environment, natural opportunities and a relationship with your boss. In addition, your performance and company needs should be in your favor.

  Look for the right opportunity to articulate your needs: Make sure you plan for this in advance. This can start when you are developing your performance plan and developing a career plan with your boss.

Present it in the plan in the right tone, the right opportunity might be the performance review process, setting up the career goals. It might also be a good opportunity to articulate such needs when the company is going through a restructuring process and the job promotion opportunity looks feasible considering the company needs.

  Be Prepared Keep the conversation in a Positive Tone: Thank your boss for the time and support. Present it clearly, which position are you requesting for and how it aligns with the past performance, skills and knowledge and other personal professional qualities you have.

Make sure you are well prepared and have a very good reflection of the strengths that make you ready for the promotion and also the areas that you will continue working on.  Plan in advance the adequate details to support your aspiration.

  Communicate that You are Still Interested in Keep Learning and Developing: While you believe you are fully prepared for the job promotion, your boss may have some concern about the additional needs for development, so the best way to balance this is to highlight your strengths as well as your motivation for continuous learning.

  Analyze Any Offer by Your Boss before you Agree: The Response from your boss in response to your job promotion request might be in different forms and sometimes you may get some other offers and opportunities.

Before you respond, take your time to analyze the pros and cons and how that opportunity fits your strengths. If you think the opportunity is not suitable for you, say no. Because saying no now will be better than failing in the future which will have longer-term negative implications on your performance.


3. Capitalize every promotion opportunity and turn them into reality

Different organizations have different job promotion practices, some organizations offer direct promotion based on performance, some others publish internal promotion opportunities and require the employees to apply for the new positions. While any of the solicited or unsolicited opportunities are available, there are certain things you can turn the result in your favor:

3.1  Apply for the positions communicate with the management in a positive way:

If there are opportunities for promotion, make sure you reflect on your strengths and weaknesses. If you think you are ready enough to embark on the new position effectively apply with full preparation.

Make sure you present your skills and experiences and performances adequately and how to promote opportunities. Before you apply, communicate the decision with your boss and get his/her consensus on this. Be vigilant to the new positions that might be attractive and relevant for your promotion opportunities.

3.2  Get Ready for Promotion Interview

Promotion interviews are important aspects of job promotion. In order to secure early career growth, you need to perform well in your job promotion interviews. Below are the key tips to perform well in the job promotion Interview:

  Understand the Hiring Process: All the companies have slightly different hiring processes. So, understand the hiring process, find out what is counted most in the hiring process and make sure you have adequately put efforts to take the best advantage of the detailed understanding.

  Pay attention to details: Pay attention to the details, early gestures of the management, the early indication can be helpful to correct and improve any miscommunication and clear any doubt the management has during the process.

  Highlight Your Strengths: Once you have understood the hiring process, highlight your strengths that are counted most and that contribute in a positive way. Develop strategies to present how you will manage any limitations you have. Do not panic even if you have some weaknesses, every individual has limitations, and you can turn them into an advantage with regular support.

  Demonstrate You Understand Your Limitation and Progressively Work to Improve: Make sure you present your understanding of the limitations and how you have progressively improved them. What strategies are you applying for improvements? Give concrete and convincing examples.

  Don’t be Overconfident: Be confident but do not be overconfident. Show the learning attitude, communicate what you can do and will continue to learn and grow. Share your career aspiration and learning plan. Share your vision and plan once you get promoted. Tell them you can do things well.

As an employee, if you are able to prioritize your skills development, proactively communicate your aspiration to your boss, put every effort to capitalize on every promotion opportunity available, timely job promotion is on your hand.


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Anthony Cornell

Anthony Cornell is a freelance technology journalist. He reviews educational software and writes in-depth online course reviews from popular e-learning platforms. You can reach Anthony at anthony@learnacourseonline.com

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