How to Make Moves and Get the Promotion You Deserve

How to Make Moves and Get the Promotion You Deserve

Helpful tips from business veterans on how to get promoted earlier in your career.


Being in an entry-level position doesn’t mean you can’t aspire to greater things – and make strides toward reaching those goals. Here are some helpful tips from business veterans on how to get recognized and get promoted earlier in your career.

1. Make Your Intentions Known
Does your manager know you want to move up? According to Amazon’s Andrew Hamada, your boss has a lot of say in promotion decisions, so it’s important let him or her know what your forward-looking goals are. Talk to your manager about what positions are available and which ones might be a good fit for you.

In the meantime, Hamada recommends getting a good handle on your company’s review and promotion process in order to make a stronger case for yourself. Instead of asking vague questions like “What can I do to get promoted?” you’ll be able to ask more specific, pointed questions and show your manager that you’re the best candidate for the promotion. 

2. Know the Requirements
Have a handle on what you need to do and know in order to reach the next level. Hamada recommends asking your manager for specific, measurable requirements to help you better understand what would be expected of you in order to receive a promotion. Having a specific list can go a long way during your next performance review.

“Whenever possible, ask to be measured on things in your direct control,” Hamada writes. “For example, if I am a marketer responsible for generating sales leads, I would rather be measured on lead volume than on sales volume, because I have no control over how salespeople close the leads.”

3. Go Above and Beyond
Your basic job requirements cover what you need to do to keep your job, not what you need to do to get promoted. Oftentimes, getting a promotion means doing more than your fair share of the work to help your colleagues and managers – and your company as a whole.

Take the initiative and offer to pick up the slack when you see things that need to be done – even if they aren’t in your job description. Be a go-getter and let others know that you can take on extra work and responsibilities. 

4. Accept Challenges and New Opportunities
Join a work committee or panel, find ways to get noticed by the right people and take on new tasks that might be outside your comfort zone. Sable Badaki from SheWorks recommends taking unique initiatives that will impact your co-workers in positive ways, and also volunteering inside and outside the organization to develop and highlight the skills you need for your next job.

“Risks and chances can catapult you forward if they work out,” Badaki writes. “Fear of failure may prevent you from taking up the challenge. However, without failure nothing new can be achieved, and it is only those who are willing to take risks and to work hard at their dreams [who] can make it big and become inspirations for others.” 

5. Put It All Together
Have everything you need for when an opportunity for promotion presents itself. Put together samples and awards or endorsements for the work you’ve done. Grab copies of spreadsheets, proposals, reports and even memos that you’ve prepared, and then pick the best examples to help exhibit what you know and how you can bring that knowledge to the type of position you’re looking to snag.

Have you helped cut expenses? Did you create a new template for that weekly report? Find other examples of how you’ve made your manager’s life easier and how you’ve gone above and beyond in the work you’ve done. Use all of this to create a solid portfolio that shows why you deserve to work at the next level.

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