Rejection is a part of life and it’s not always easy to handle. But there are ways to get over the disappointment of being rejected for promotion and put yourself in a much better position to achieve a promotion in the future. In this article we take a look at what to do when you are denied a promotion.
A good place to start is by understanding why you were rejected in the first place. It may be that you didn’t have enough experience, or maybe your boss prefers someone else in your field who has closer matching skills.
Seek feedback from your employer following your promotion rejection and try to find out what your boss expects from you and how you can reach those expectations in the future.
It would be easy following a rejection to let your performance slip and for you to consider your immediate career options. But with a clear head, it is important to understand the position you currently find yourself in and understand the decision made by the employer and the feedback they have provided.
Are you happy with your existing job role?
One reason why people go for a promotion is that they are unhappy in their current job. This could be because of the pay, your ambitions, boredom or just wanting a new challenge.
If you are still in a job role you are unhappy with you may want to consider looking for promotion opportunities by moving employers or making a sideways move into a different department at your existing employer.
Obtaining a promotion is never guaranteed to be a quick process and it might take months to years to achieve. Continue to maintain your standards in your current job, maintaining a good reputation will help support any future promotions you go for with your employer.
Can you accept the reasons for your rejection?
Naturally, you will want to know and understand why somebody else was given the opportunity over yourself, but that doesn’t always mean you have to accept it.
If you feel strongly that you were the best candidate and had the experience, skills, desire and motivation to take on the role then you could feel aggrieved by the decision.
If the feedback provided is agreeable with you and they have provided an explanation into what they feel you were lacking, you can take away this information and work on it to improve your chances next time.
Put together a career plan
Using the feedback you can begin to learn and appreciate what is needed to make the transition to the next stage up the company hierarchy.
Make note of what you need to learn and how you can go about learning these things. Somethings such as project management skills you might be able to learn by going back to school or through online courses on websites like Udemy.
Other skills and knowledge will only be obtainable from doing them at your place of work. Speak with your team and superiors and ask if this is work you can get involved with or learn about from them.
If you make your intentions clear to them that you are still motivated to achieve promotion and career progression, a good manager and employer will support you with this. Getting involved in these areas will greatly support your promotion chances the next time around.
Should you quit after getting rejected for promotion?
Quitting any job is a big decision that should not be taken lightly and it is important not to rush into things, letting our emotions get the better of us.
Quitting your job after getting denied for a promotion might sound like an extreme measure but in some cases, it might be the best thing to do, if not immediately, but further down the line. If you are considering leaving your job you might find our article How To Prepare For Unemployment useful.
Some people will spend years working hard waiting for the day a promotion opportunity becomes available where they work. After years of hard work, being a team player and going the extra mile, it can be a devastating blow to your confidence to get rejected for promotion. A blow you might not be able to overlook that stops you from continuing to give your all. In this case, you might look for pastures new.
Another reason to consider leaving your job following a promotion rejection is to continue with your ambitions of career progression. Just because your existing employer didn’t think you were ready, does not mean others will think the same.
This ambitious approach is a great one to have, but you need to be sure that you have the correct skills, knowledge and experience in place before following through with it. Arrogance and overstating your actual abilities can result in career disaster and harm you in the long run.
How to Prevent Getting Rejected for Promotion in the Future
There are a few things that one can do to avoid being rejected for promotion in the future.
First, try to ensure that your work is of high quality. If you have been working hard and doing your job well, then this should not be an issue. But if there are any areas in which you feel you need to improve, then it’s worth taking the time to do so.
As well as the skills you require day-to-day to do your job successfully, consider as well the “softer” skills that more senior employees in organisations are desired to have. The Brighton School of Business & Management lists these 6 things as essential skills for managers:
Secondly, make sure that you have a good relationship with your boss and colleagues. You will need their support if you want to be promoted in the future, so it’s important that they like and respect you.
A solid relationship with your boss can really go a long way, and not just for the sake of having mutual respect in an attempt to gain favour when promotion time comes around. But where allowed, work closely with your boss to shadow them, learn from them and if possible receive mentorship from them. There is no better learning experience than from someone who is already working at the level you one day wish to aspire to.
Next is to learn from your rejection experiences previously and use them to your advantage. Be able to demonstrate to them that you have taken on board the feedback and used it to improve yourself. They might find it hard to say no if you can prove you’ve done exactly what they said to do!
Never Give Up on Your Dream of Being Promoted
Successful people in the world are said to never give up on their dreams and always follow their passion. They know that if they work hard enough and persevere, they will be able to achieve anything they set out to do.
It’s never too late to make your dream of promotion come true. Companies are always looking for motivated individuals with a strong work ethic and passion for their job. You might not achieve this where you are now and you might need to move jobs or industries to get there, but for those who are committed to their career development and building a better life for themselves and those around them, opportunities will always present themselves.