Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Time To Advance Your Career? What You Need To Know About Asking For Promotion

Is the present state of your career leaving you frustrated? Would you like to make a career forward move at work? If the answer to these questions is yes, you might consider trying career advancement by asking for a promotion.

Whether you should ask for a promotion is a tricky issue for your career. You need to consider various factors carefully before you ask your boss for one. It is not something you do on a whim.

A request for promotion can do many things. It may work in your favour, no doubt about that. But it might also do nothing for your career development; worse, it could do more harm than good to your career planning.

An important factor in deciding whether you should ask for a promotion or not is whether there is an opening. Do you really know the human resource requirement of your employers, now or in the near future? Timing, as they say, is everything.

If an open position does exist, it will greatly enhance your chances of getting a promotion. It is imperative that you are aware of the relevant career information at all times. You need to know if there are any open positions in the company, whether from inside sources, online recruitment portals, or even the local newspaper. As soon as you hear of one, you may consider asking your boss for a promotion.

How long you have been with your current employers is another big factor you need to take into account before you make that career forward move. Although a short period with your present employer does not necessarily rule you out, your chances of career advancement would be significantly higher with a longer period of employment. Many employers like to reward with promotions people who have been with them for a longer period of time. So you should always keep your tenure in the present concern in mind when deciding whether to ask for a promotion.

Your career planning goals are another important element that you should keep in mind when you make the decision whether you should ask for a promotion or not. Would you be willing to make a career transition in search of a job that offers better pay, better benefits or better prospects of career advancement? If you are inclined to do that, you might as well consider asking for a promotion.

The fact that you are considering moving on to greener pastures itself means that you have nothing to lose by asking for a promotion. The answer that you hear may in fact surprise you. Many companies will be ready to give out promotions or better terms to retain employees they do not want to lose.

When you are trying to decide whether you should ask for career advancement or not, you need to know the history of such attempts in the company. Getting that information from the office grapevine could be tricky business; you could yourself end up being the subject of workplace gossip. However, it is important for you to know if any other employees have in fact sought a promotion in the past. Did they succeed in their efforts? If not, were there any negative repercussions? Again, rather than gossiping around to get the information, you need to keep your eyes and ears open to get the answers.

A lot of tact and caution is necessary if you were to decide that you would ask your supervisor for a promotion. Your supervisors may not be fully aware of your achievements as an employee or your contribution to the company’s cause. Perhaps you have not worked personally with the decision makers either.

You need to try and get an appointment with those who matter in your quest for career development. Treat this meeting like a job interview and try to sell yourself. Point out delicately your contribution to the company’s success; also mention how important career advancement is for you.

The above factors are important when you finally decide if you are ready to step onto the next level of your career. Should you decide to do so, you need to be tactful and delicate and also confident enough to sell yourself. The bottomline is, do not get upset or feel insulted if your request for a promotion is rejected.


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