5 Things That Could Be Stopping You From Your Next Promotion

Have you noticed you are consistently being passed for that coveted promotion? If you feel like your career is at a standstill, there are multiple steps you can take to push it to the next level. Here are five things you’re doing that might be preventing you from moving to the next level.

1) You Don’t Take Initiative

Are you an active collaborator in your organization, or do you just check off the boxes of your job description? Here are a few ways to demonstrate initiative:

  • Collaborate with others on tasks that may be outside your job duty is a key identifier of individuals who are leaders.
  • Don’t passively experience the problems you see within your organization; analyze the issues and get involved in developing solutions.
  • Volunteer for projects that will allow you to follow and lead a diverse group.
  • Ask for the promotion. Many managers will pass up an employee for a role simply because they didn’t know they were interested in it.

2) You Don’t Accept Feedback Well

There is a reason bi-annual or annual reviews exist – to offer candid feedback to improve your overall job performance. If there are key areas your manager has identified that repeatedly appear on the “need to work on” areas, this shows that you are not adapting or improving at the task or characteristic at hand.

Work on improving your weak areas, and ask your manager for help if you are not sure how to improve.

3) You’re a Jack Of All Trades and a Master of None

While it’s important as a manager in the public-sector space to understand multiple job roles and responsibilities, many of the best performers excel because of repeated recognition for a specific task.

GovLoop contributor Martha Austin explains, “You can focus your energy on identifying, magnifying and using your unique gifts – those things that you do like no one else in the world.”

4) You Are The Office Gossip

You may get your daily tasks done, but if executives within your organization see you are equally concerned with the social aspect of the job, this could be hindering your career trajectory.

GovLoop contributor Tracey Batacan suggests this: “Be kind to everyone, you never know who you are talking to in the hall, the elevator, or the lab.” Additionally, GovLoop fellow Meiko Patton advises to “choose your associates wisely. A good rule to go on is this: Are your workmates anchors or engines. An anchor pulls you down while an engine rejuvenates and revitalizes you. Which type do you want to be around?”

Studies reveal people earn within 20 percent of the average income of their five closest friends. Being the office gossip or hanging out with the wrong crowd can truly affect your overall earning potential and your ability to get promoted.

5) You Don’t Take Timing Into Consideration

Promotions can be a function of timing as much as they are centered on work performance. Focus on yearly anniversaries and craft a pitch with your manager to reach the next pay grade. Austin explains, “if you’ve been promoted this year, the promotion panels are unlikely to give you active consideration for promotion until about two years later, at a minimum.” She went on to reveal this: “After those two years, you move into the ‘sweet spot’ where you are considered in the prime window for promotion. This sweet spot window usually stays open for about two to three years.”

Ready to take your career to the next level? Create a personal game plan to map out the foreseeable future of your career and follow the above pointers to increase the chances of your next promotion.

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