ask for a promotion

How do you ask for a promotion and really, actually get it? And how do you do it smoothly, without looking too eager? Do you feel like you are ripe for a promotion? Do you think you have what it takes to take on this new role in the company? Is it time for you to level up? It’s human to manage your own expectations to not expect too much or get your hopes up. But, let’s be honest, you know when you have given your best performance and when you are due a promotion because you are working at the level above. Here is a video about some helpful tips that you can use to ask for a promotion and actually get it!

We’re in appraisal, performance review time. So you might be thinking about how do I go in and ask for a promotion? Well actually, if you’ve been having the conversations correctly with your manager, you shouldn’t need to ask for a promotion because they’re already on it. You know, don’t wait for your performance review to ask for a promotion. But actually, if that’s you now, here are some of the things you need to do. First and foremost is get the job description, the competency framework in your firm, of what is that next level up that you think you’re at? The next thing is, if you don’t have that, observe what people are doing in the next thing up. Then write down a list of your accomplishments, and actually write down a list of evidence that says I’m already performing at that level.

So for example, let’s say if you want to make manager. Well at manager level, it’s about been able to run the audit from the office with people on site. So where are the evidence that you’ve got that you’re running a couple of audits from the office with people on-site? Or maybe you’re a supervisor and actually, your manager is basically delegating everything so you are, in name, running the office, running the audit from the office.

So look for all the elements of what is that job doing, where do you meet the criteria. Now if you’re female, you’ll have a tendency to want to meet the criteria nine out of ten most of the time. If you’re a male, it’ll be a lot less. So if you’re a man, you’ll probably need to be identifying more opportunities where you meet your criteria. If you’re female, remember that you only need to be typically 60 – 70% there!

So in terms of asking for that promotion, you need to have prepared where is your list of the way already acting there? Now the next thing is, it’s not just about are you ready for the role, but is there a business case for your promotion? And that’s one of the things that many people miss out when they’re talking about I need a promotion. Actually, it’s not about I need, it’s does the business need somebody acting at that level? Because if you get promoted, your charge and time target will go up. The amount that you charge up to clients will go out. And actually, there’s got to a business need. So it’s about time to think about, right where is there a business need?

And if there isn’t a business need, then your conversation needs to be, I would love to get promoted to manager but I realise that we’re top-heavy there. What do I need to do to help the business get there? Where do I need to be demonstrating? Do I need to think about a sideways move, maybe?

And sometimes you might just need to have a very adult conversation that your promotional timescale is just not going to suit the business.  And that might need to be that you need to go somewhere else. So it’s about having that honest conversation. Now if you’ve been doing the groundwork, you would have already been drip-feeding into your line manager that you’d like to make manager, you’d like to make senior manager, you’re working towards making director.

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And you’ve already got agreement to that timescale. Now there might be times where you can see that there is a business case for you to be promoted. You’ve got evidence that you’re already acting, thinking and feeling like that level. So you may need to go in and actually pitch that I’m ready.

So this is about looking also at your internal value. What evidence have you got that you’re highly valued by either people wanting you on their team, be it the sort of work that you’re doing, see that clients are asking for you? And it’s to lay that out for them.

Now when you ask for the promotion, don’t go in there with “I’m ready to be a manager, give it to me”.

That could put people on the back foot.

This about going in and going, “Actually I believe that I’ve probably got enough evidence that the business needs another manager and I’m ready for that. Can we discuss it please?” So you’re not going in saying I need it. It is about, “Let’s have a discussion, let’s see where the development areas are, let’s see what evidence I need to be demonstrating to justify that promotion.

So what I want to say is, if you’re gonna ask for a promotion, ideally you would have been talking about where you want to get to. It’s not gonna come as a surprise. You’d have been having a dialogue about how you’re meeting or not meeting the grade. But if that hasn’t been the case, then it’s about going in and going, “Where can I evidence that I’m already operating at that level? Where can I say that the business needs another person at that level?

And it might be that actually if you look upwards, we’ve gotta have a shuffle upwards, and so we’re gonna have a gap there. And it’s to go in and be positive. And if this is you, good luck in that conversation.

Don’t leave your promotion prospects to chance!

I created  Progress to Partner Academy make this as easy as possible. There are guides, 14 self-study courses, useful videos, workbooks waiting for you – everything you need to know about how to make partner all in one place. Click here to find out more 

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