How to get the promotion you want

professionals on light blue escalator with sun coming through big windows

Doing your job really well isn't enough if you want to climb the career ladder – you need to show your employers why they should promote you in a positive, resilient and strategic way. Below are some hints and tips on how to get a promotion.

Is a promotion likely?

Before you start a new job, look for a company that can give you room to grow and is likely to have promotion opportunities.

You don't necessarily have to work for a large firm, but you do want to look for an organisation that has enough going on so that you can be assured you're not going to be disappointed when the time comes to discuss a promotion with your boss. 

Excel in your current position

Show your employer that you are committed to getting the promotion you want by gaining new skills and qualifications that are relevant to the new position. 

Focus on doing the best you possibly can in your current position. Outstanding appraisals and/or performance reviews won't get you the promotion you are after but they will certainly count towards it. So will the more simple tasks such as punctuality, good attendance, and a willingness to go the extra mile when the company needs it.

Add to your skill set

Show your employer that you are committed to getting the promotion you want by gaining new skills and qualifications that are relevant to the new position. Staying up-to-date with industry requirements is vital when trying to advance your career.

Network and attend industry events

Attending industry networking events relevant to the promotion you want can help you get in the mindset of the new role. Meeting like minded peers and learning about topical issues is a valuable and uncomplicated way to get you prepared for your future.

Talk to your peers

It might sound obvious but the best way to learn about the job you want and how to get it is by asking someone who is already doing it. They will be able to tell you their employment history, how they climbed the career ladder and progressed to their current role. You'll be able to learn from their experiences and find out if they have any hints and tips to help you move forwards.

Get a mentor

Mentoring is becoming more and more popular amongst professionals who want to progress in their career. By finding a good mentor and building a strong relationship with someone more senior than you, you are showing initiative to your manager and a sense of commitment to actively grow your career.

Be proactive

Organise a meeting with your manager to discuss your career goals and  aspirations so they are aware of your objectives and can help you reach them. Also, be proactive and apply for opportunities. You'll need to proactively seek your won't necessarily come to you.

Find out your worth with the Robert Walters Global Salary Survey.

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For more career advice please contact:

Nic Sephton-Poultney, Country Manager (South Africa)
+27 (0) 11 881 2414

Career advice


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