Asking for a promotion is a very nerve wrecking situation to be in as an employee. Most women find it intimidating to go to their superior and ask for a better position in the company. Even more intimidating for them when the person they are asking from is a male counterpart.

There is nothing to be afraid of when it comes to asking for a promotion, especially if you know you deserve it. Here’s a guide on how to ask and hopefully get that promotion you have set your eyes on.

  1. Reflect on what you want exactly. Before you even head up to your bosses’ office know what you want out of your promotion. Is your main objective more money, a more powerful position, a better office? Are you trying to move up to an existing role or are you trying to create a new one? Knowing what it is you want will make it easier for you to articulate what you need when talking to your boss.
  2. Do your research. Show that you know and understand the position you are looking to obtain and that you deserve it. What are your current accomplishments? Give your manager examples of when you have successfully carried out a leadership role. Highlight when your efforts have translated to value for the company. Show them that you are ready for the role. The research shouldn’t just end with you impressing your manager with what you’ve done. Also take time to ask your colleagues about yourself. Ask them how you are perceived in the company. If you have a reputation that isn’t serving you well, now could be the time to adjust that. Also talk to peers who have recently gotten promotions and ask them about the strategies they used to get the promotion.
  3. Plan the timing. We have heard this countless times; “Timing is everything”. Just don’t fall in the trap of waiting for a perfect time because that doesn’t exist. Be aware of cycles in the company and plan on when it is best to approach your manager for a promotion. It is best for you to bring up the topic for a promotion during your performance review. You will already be talking about your role in the company and if you have been doing well it might be the right time to mention getting a promotion. Be careful not to bring up a promotion when your company is retrenching people, they are most likely not looking at getting more high paid employees. Rather ask when something good has happened in the company and it is looking for expansion. Whilst on the topic of timing, don’t let bad economic environment scare you off, at times your company could still be looking for people to promote regardless.
  4. Ask for the meeting. The next step would be to set up the meeting and be clear on the agenda. Don’t make it seem like you just want to discuss regular business with your manager. Let him/her know that you would want to discuss getting a promotion. Don’t catch your manager off guard. Letting them know what the agenda is will also give them time to catch up on your performance reviews and ensure you will be on the same page when having your discussion. Present your boss with what you will do in the first 90 days on the new job to show that you have thought it all through.
  5. Know your numbers. Most people get stuck when it’s time to talk about money. A promotion will come with a salary increase, make sure you are ready to discuss the numbers. Know how much people in similar roles earn in your company as well as in your industry. Never be caught off guard when this topic comes up and don’t sell yourself short. It’s better to ask for too much not too little. Companies rarely give you more than you have asked for. One point that may seem obvious but just needs to be pointed out is that you should only talk numbers when you have been offered the promotion. Don’t jump the gun and start demanding for more money before they even give you the job.
  6. Follow up. If you don’t get the promotion on the first try which is often the case don’t let it go completely. Get feedback as to why you can’t get the promotion. If the timing isn’t right ask when could be a good time to revisit the topic. Make sure the seed is firmly planted that you are ready for a promotion. Create a memo with bullet points on what you’ve done so far. Use language like, “I’m excited to be here and to make an impact” and always ask what you should do to make the manager confident about your next step. Always follow up but don’t become irritating. You can ask for feedback on the status of your promotion every two months or so.

African queen x business

This should set you on the path to getting that coveted promotion and put your mind at ease in regards to how to go about the whole process. Remember no one has ever gotten fired for asking for a promotion so what’s the worst that could happen?

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