While getting a promotion at work is a matter of pride and joy, not getting it, especially when you were expecting it, can leave you angry, disheartened and demoralised. We agree that it won’t be one of the best days of your life but there are ways to deal with it. So, before you get onto your Hulk-mode, ready to thrash whoever comes your way, read this:
1. Keep calm
First, take a deep breath. Being passed over for that ‘much-deserved’ promotion is going to spark an array of emotions in you. And trust us, none of them will be pleasant. However, the rule of the thumb is to not react when you are angry. Do not burn any bridges in your rage as you could damage your relationship with close colleagues and even seniors who could help improve your situation.
Instead, take a break. Go to a coffee shop and have your favourite coffee with a colleague who really understands you. You could also think about all the positives related to your job and colleagues. Take your time to get over the whole situation. In other words, just sleep over it.
2. Discuss the reasons with your superior
If you have a great rapport with your boss, there is absolutely no harm in letting him know that you were expecting to be promoted. You can also ask him the reasons why they passed you over for someone else. This will not only unburden you of your bundled up emotions but also give you an insight into what you could have done better. Take the feedback positively and use it to know what your company demands from you better.
In the book, Unequaled: Tips for Building a Successful Career Through Emotional Intelligence, Jim Runde talks about how having short but effective meetings with your boss once every three months will give you clarity on what you should focus on to succeed and will also let your boss know what you have been working on. Having a transparent discussion with your senior will also eliminate any assumptions you had around favouritism and personal traits.
3. Plan the road ahead
When you know what it takes to be promoted, it is the perfect opportunity to work towards it. You now have a chance to work on your drawbacks such as – improve your interpersonal communication, enhance your leadership skills by taking up a training or online course, and ensure your image is perceived positively by your colleagues and seniors.
In his book Getting Ahead: Three Steps to Take Your Career to the Next Level, Joel A. Garfinkle writes ‘discover the mind-sets that are stunting your growth, and overcome your fear of the spotlight’ to be a strong influence at the workplace. Take a look at these five ways to be a more skilled worker. There are various ways to highlight the efforts you are putting in and thus justify a designation upgrade. Start planning now!
4. Don’t be devastated
You might want to rush home, shut all the lights and doors, pull up your blanket and never look at the outside world again. Unfortunately, that cannot happen. Always remember, not being promoted is not the end of the world. So, chuck the ‘Why not me?’ mantra. As we said earlier, you only need to learn and grow from it. Think of how you can work things differently this time around and never lose hope.
You will have many occasions to grow in your career so take this as an opportunity to widen your perspective. For all you know, all your hard work will pay off and you will be promoted in 6 months! And yes, don’t forget to uplift your spirits by wearing your best clothes and going to work the next day. Chin up!
5. Move on
This must be your Plan Z. If you have tried everything else and still don’t see any career growth in your team, consider shifting to another one. If the entire company doesn’t seem to be promising enough, you can look for better opportunities elsewhere. Don’t hesitate to take this step for your career growth but be sure before you take the leap.
Don’t resign in anger before you have another job. Finding the right job may take long so be prepared to stick around till then. Again, it is the best to leave on a positive note rather than a negative one. And as they say, ‘whatever happens, happens for the best.’ So maybe, a much better opportunity is waiting with open arms for you somewhere. You just need to find it!
Keep reading the BankBazaar blog for more insights into career issues, together with tips to master your money and get better at life.