Career advice

How to get a promotion

Promotions aren’t just handed out to anyone at random – you have to prove your worth. So, it’s important you impress your manager and show you’re ready to take the next step in your career. With smart preparation, the right attitude and a good support network, you will be in a strong position to take that step. Below are some tips that can help you secure a promotion.

The right company

When applying for jobs, research the company and make sure there is room to grow. Look for a company that is growing and will therefore be able to present you with opportunities in the future.

Talk to your manager

It is crucial that your boss is a key supporter of your promotion. Those who get results get ahead, so remind them of everything you do that adds real value. Discussing your ambitions with your manager also helps them to understand your goals so they can help you reach them. Show initiative by asking them how you can take on more responsibility within or outside your own team in order to broaden your experience.

Find a mentor

Finding a mentor is one of the smartest ways to get ahead in your career. You can draw on their experience to find out how to navigate the company, and they can provide valuable guidance to advance your career. Building a strong relationship with someone higher in the company can also help to open doors; they can spread the good word about you and act as a referee when you apply for a new opportunity or promotion.

Staying marketable

Staying fresh and marketable is essential in being considered for promotion. Employers do not want to promote someone who has gone stale and is lacking both new skills and motivation. A good way to increase your skills is to volunteer for opportunities and duties that arise. Try to help out with work from the level above you to demonstrate that you are capable of that position.

Prove your worth

To maximise your chances of being considered for promotion, you must first exceed expectations in your existing role. In addition to strong technical competence, earning a reputation for being a dependable, capable, hard worker is also essential. Try to cultivate these attributes to help prove your worth:
  • Reliable: keep your promises and meet deadlines
  • Professional: take responsibility for your mistakes and learn from them
  • Proactive: take the initiative to improve what you do
  • Creative: offer well-considered ideas and innovative solutions
  • People-focused: be a team player and be willing to get involved in activities
  • Visible: find ways to get yourself and your work in front of senior people
  • Problem-solver: use your expertise to solve problems for others
  • Dedicated: do more than is required in your own role and for your team
  • Committed: give your best effort no matter how small the job
  • Visionary: believe in yourself and in the bigger goals of your team and company.

Show initiative

Apply for jobs within the company and don’t wait for a promotion to fall in your lap. Many companies will require you to go through the application and interview process, and you may have to compete with other candidates. Take a look at our CV and interview tips to help impress your employer.