With inflation at a 40-year high and the cost of living rising at an astronomical pace, searches for “How to ask for a cost of living raise” are surging as workers seek a solution to their financial woes. But with businesses also counting the costs, employees must consider how to increase the value they offer and effectively present their case to convince their employer they’re deserving of more.

How to Ask For a Promotion in 5 Steps

  1. Do your research and determine your value.
  2. Master new skills and seek more responsibility.
  3. Support your request with examples and hard data.
  4. Keep calm and avoid common negotiation mistakes.
  5. Don’t let a “no” stall your career progression.

Every business has its pains. As an employee, you must make yourself a “painkiller,” honing your skills, taking on greater responsibility and showing your manager you’re ready to take the next step in your professional career.

Do your research, build your case, then ask the question. With hiring new employees painfully difficult and expensive, the market is on your side. If you possess the skills and can demonstrate your value, your employer is likely to accommodate your request.


5 Tips for Securing A Promotion


1. Do Your Research and Determine Your Value

Before approaching your employer, first determine whether your current salary meets the market benchmark. Salary tools can help you search by industry, job title and location to figure out whether you’re being paid a fair wage. If your salary is below the average, negotiations are likely in order.

If your salary is inline with the average, perhaps it’s the right time to take that next step. But here, timing is everything. Early-career employees should be pushing for a promotion and the financial boost it provides every two-to-three years. However, those on the higher rungs of the career ladder may face a longer wait.

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2. Master New Skills and Seek More Responsibility

Improving your skill set is a sure-fire way to move up the corporate ladder. Scour job boards to determine skills and roles in demand in your niche and consider any learning opportunities that will help you progress.

However, don’t rush into a course without due diligence and don’t fall for internet thought leaders long on social media followers but short on industry experience. Check the course leader’s background on LinkedIn and the course reviews on Trustpilot to ensure it’s worth your time and resources.

Speaking to your manager may also help to identify skills that will support your progression, while making it clear that you’re open to taking on more responsibility.


3. Support Your Request With Examples and Hard Data

When discussing a potential promotion, your employer will want to determine whether your services will provide adequate value at the price you’re demanding just like any other business deal.

In addition to highlighting the responsibilities you’ve taken on, use examples to demonstrate how your input has helped the company's growth. This could be by securing lucrative deals, improving workplace efficiency or reducing unnecessary expenses. 

And don’t just tell them. Show them. It’s estimated that up to 85 percent of our cognition is mediated through vision. This means the average person is far more likely to respond to what they see than what they hear, so prepare a short deck that visually outlines your value.


4. Keep Calm and Avoid Common Negotiation Mistakes

While such discussions can be frustrating, keep the conversation positive. Not only will staying composed show that you cope well under pressure — a valuable skill in any workplace — but you’re also more likely to present your case effectively. 

Even if discussions aren’t going to plan, ultimatums are best avoided. This will only raise questions about your commitment, which is unlikely to strengthen your case.

Once concluded, give your employer time to consider what they can offer. Budgets may be tight under such difficult economic conditions and rubber-stamping a promotion may require sign-offs from various parties.

More on Career DevelopmentHow to Counter Offer in a Salary Negotiation


5. Don’t Let a ‘No’ Stall Your Career Progression

Even with suitable skills and a perfect pitch, there’s no guarantee you’ll get that promotion. If discussions don’t go your way, consider requesting alternative perks. A small salary bump, training opportunities or flexible working could help to ease the stress of sky-high inflation and aid you in reaching that next step.

In the meantime, continue to learn, take on new workplace challenges and increase the value you provide. Once it’s time to revisit negotiations, your case will be impossible for your employer to ignore.

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