7 Things You Need to Do to Win Promotion

Published: Aug 14, 2014

 Salary & Benefits       Workplace Issues       
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Promotion tends to make us think of moving up the so-called corporate ladder, but maybe we need to think about the importance of what we're doing on our level - lateral promotions. What you're doing now in your career is just as important. However, if working your way up is what you want then go for that. Just don't forget that there are other ways to show off your skills and experience. Whether you're moving laterally or vertically these tips will make sure you get the promotion you want.

1.   Prioritize Your Work

When managers are considering promoting an employee, the ability to prioritize work takes precedence. In a study described in Promote Yourself: The New Rules for Career Success, author Dan Schawbel partnered with American Express to interview 1,000 managers from different companies around the U.S. In the study, 87% of the managers said that the ability to prioritize work is the most important skill they look for in employees. Knowing which of the projects on your desk is the most important, then, is vital to gaining promotion.

2.   Work with Your Team

In Schawbel and American Express' study, teamwork was identified as the second most important skill an employee needs to show to be considered promotable. When you do a good job on something be sure to credit your whole team, not just yourself. Figure out a way you can help support your team's weaknesses with your strengths. Communicate with everyone daily and make sure you are all on the same page. 

3.   Be an Intrapreneur

You've heard of entrepreneurs, but employers want to give promotions to intrapreneurs—employees who want to learn different tasks throughout the company. The study showed that these employees are hard to find. To become an intrapreneur, search for ways to improve the company within your level. Look around you and see what you can do to make things easier for your manager. 

4.   Get Personal

You need to have face time with your managers. In person meetings are important for growing business relationships. If you work at home, but one of the businesses you work for is near you, set up an in person meeting. 

5.   Be Patient

Many managers are seeing the impatience of millennials, and are seeking out more patient employees. Things just don't happen as quickly as this generation seems to want them to. Managers know when you're ready for a promotion. Be patient. 

6.   Multi-Level Experience

Many managers will support employees who want to move around within the company. When you have experience in more than one area, you become more valuable to the company. Good managers will recognize your value, see that you want to learn, and be more likely to give you a promotion. 

7.   Work on Soft Skills

Soft skills include communication, a positive attitude, and social skills. These are the skills managers are looking for when a promotion is in order. Show that you are able to communicate well with your team and your manager. Be positive and friendly with those you encounter. Work on your social skills to network within your company.


What other tips do you have for securing a promotion? Let us know in the comments below or on Twitter @vaultcareers