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This is how to navigate through workplace blues to get promotion

By GORETTI KIMANI | May 2nd 2014


Promotion in the workplace is an employee’s vertical movement up the corporate ladder. It is the number one dream for any employee.

Most workers aim at successful careers and in reality, however, promotions seem to be beyond the reach of many. This thinking leads to the vicious cycle of hopelessness, anger and suspicion in the work place. When Isaac got his first job, a few years back, he had only one resolve; to keep moving up the ladder and hit the manager’s position in a couple of years.

Five years down the line, he has only bagged one promotion. He is far from his original goal. Isaac is not alone in this predicament. Maintaining an upward trajectory requires one to have a good career plan and sticking to it no matter what happens. A journey without an itinerary is simply a detour, and growth for the sake of it is like a cancer cell. You may make some adjustments to the plan as you move along, but never ditch your plan. In many cases, it is necessary to align your goals with those of the organisation as you move along. You must keep your professional life in shape. If you expect to grow, you must have what it takes to get you there.

Neglecting your professional standing is a sure way to rotting in mediocrity and bitterness. Besides professional skills, ensure you develop a big arsenal of soft skills. These skills come in handy in promoting career growth. Ensure you work hard and keep focused at all times. Laziness, complacency and a negative mental attitude will keep that promotion away.

If you want to grow, you must work for it. Develop habit of doing more of what is expected of you. Seek to be a problem solver and venture into areas where others do not dare to tread.


However, ensure that all your actions are genuine and not a mere act to just impress. Do not expect promotions to fall in your hands all the time. Patience is a great virtue.

Those with the guts to wait always reap the rewards. Taking every promotion as a right will make you bitter and create friction with colleagues. Understand that in some cases, promotions may be delayed due to hard economic times beyond the reach of the organisation. But maintain rationality at all times and never let your ambition blind you.

As a rule, never give into the temptation to use dubious methods to gain promotions. Such actions will always come back to haunt you and possibly erase any career gains achieved so far. 

If you genuinely believe there are forces working against your growth, it is better to make the radical choice of moving on rather than hang around and wallow in self-pity and infectious bitter talk.  Whatever you do, remember this is your career and if you do not work for your success, no one else will.

—The writer is a human resource specialist with Peoplelink Consultants Ltd. Email: [email protected]

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