So, you’re doing well at work, your boss seems to love you, and you’re taking on more and more responsibility already. Should you ask for a promotion directly?
It might seem like it would show initiative and drive to ask for a promotion, but career experts actually say it’s not usually a good idea. Unlike asking for a raise, asking for a promotion often backfires and isn’t as likely to be successful.
This is partly because raises are more likely to be negotiable, whereas there might not be an immediate opening available for you at any given time to move up the ladder.
So, what should you do to signal that you want to get promoted and are ready to do so? Here are a few tips about how to play it smooth at work while still getting the promotion you deserve.
Find Out About Potential Growth from the Beginning
The first step in getting a promotion is going to work at a company that promises the potential for future growth in the first place. Every company is different in terms of budget, plans for the future, and projected growth.
Some small startups might not have any wiggle room for promotions, while larger corporations might have availability for growth all the time. (And the opposite could be true sometimes, too.)
In your job interview for a given position, make sure to ask if there’s room for growth in the future. The interviewer will usually be pretty straightforward with you about the potential availability for a promotion.
And if you’re already working somewhere that’s a dead-end job with no promotion prospects in sight, it might be time to consider a lateral move to a company with more room to spread your wings.
Show, Don’t Ask
The key to getting promoted is not to ask to be promoted, but to show that you’re already ready for increased opportunities. Ask your supervisor if there’s anything else you can do to help the team, or express interest in what those immediately above you are doing.
Ask for increased responsibilities, and you just might get the chance to transition to a higher position. Prove yourself while on the job, and your supervisor is much likelier to trust you with more obligations.