Your boss excitedly congratulates you at your promotion but upon closer look, you discover that this promotion is in name only! Or you do get a pay increase but the increase is so minimal it’s almost laughable (Eek!) What should you do in these situations? Here are 3 tips to help make the most of your situation.
1. Thank your bosses
While it is tempting to react angrily in these kinds of situations, it is in fact even more important to remain professional. That is not to say that you can’t react at all, and just brush this under the rug, in fact, you should actually convey some dismay and disappointment. This way, your bosses do know that you are not satisfied but are not offended because you handled yourself professionally. And if they don’t want to lose you, they know that at the next opportunity they should make sure to increase your compensation. In tough times, do know that pay rises aren’t personal, and it may be a cost-savings company-wide policy at the moment.
This is also a good opportunity to speak candidly with your boss about performance, where the company is heading, and how you can improve your advancement chances in the company in the longer term. All of these ground work will stand you in good stead in the next round of promotions.
2. Negotiate on benefits
Even if your boss has his hands tied with regards to monetary compensation, it is possible to ask for additional benefits that you have had an eye on. This can come in a myriad of ways, depending on what you are looking for and your workplace. Perhaps you would like some work from home days, some additional family leave benefits, or even a new computer or desk space. Non-monetary perks can really improve the quality of your work life and this is a great time to ask for it!
3. Leverage your new job title
A promotion is always a good thing and you can seize the opportunity to use the new job title as leverage into better offers elsewhere. With the new title, it is easier for you to find a position that pays better since your resume will show that you have moved up in your company and are now also consequently handling more responsibility. This opens your door to better prospects.
In the meantime, if you are not keen to shift roles immediately, you should take full advantage of your new position. This is a good opportunity to learn new skill sets and take on more prominent leadership roles. Not only are you putting yourself in line for a better pay increment down the line and bonus, with more responsibility and higher value projects, you will now be in closer proximity to the higher ups in the organization. Networking is very valuable and getting a promotion can be an easy way to build more contacts, simply introduce yourself or get introduced organically as you are involved in more projects. These new contacts will come in handy one day in the long-term.
When life hands you lemons, make lemonade!
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