by Darlene Zambruski, CPRW, SME
Because internal promotions and lateral moves involve individuals that are already known entities, the key is to come prepared with proof of past job performance and answers to any objections that might be made.
Of course, this process of rating one’s worth should begin the very first day on a new job and continue until a promotion is offered or a lateral move requested.
1. Keep Detailed Records of Your Job Performance to Justify a Promotion:
No matter how fair an employer tries to be, they don’t have the same vested interest as you in personal career progression. What’s more, they have many staff to consider, while your focus is understandably personal in nature.
Therefore, don’t assume that an employer will recall the good you’ve done for the company. Keep detailed records of past projects, ideas, and successes in which you were directly involved. Quantify all accomplishments with dollar figures or percentages and time periods. Specify what you’ve done to improve work performance, whether that involves continuing education or learning a new technology.
In other words, prove your worth on paper and be certain to provide copies to those involved in the interview process. Once the interview begins, be well prepared to speak about what you’ve already written down.
2. Create a Proposal of How You Can Contribute to the Company in a Lateral Move:
Whatever the reasons are for a lateral move (eg: a more personally rewarding position, moving to a more profitable division, a chance to get away from an intolerable manager or co-worker), you should be prepared to state how the move will benefit the company.
Detail in writing and verbally your transferable skills and what a good fit you would be with the new department. No company will move an employee from one area to another if major training or adjustments have to be made.
3. Overcoming kneejerk objections:
Few managers like change, especially when you’re a good fit within a certain part of the organization. Some of the objections you may have to overcome are from those who like things just as they are (eg: a manager who knows you’ll get the job done) or those who don’t want to rock the boat (management that is skeptical of how you can positively impact their division).
The key is to always be prepared, and be proactive about what you have done. Additionally, presentation is everything. When providing details about your accomplishments and qualifications, be certain that your work is flawless, easy to navigate, and showcases your talents.