So, You Were Passed Over for That Promotion – Now What?

It has happened to a lot of us. We work hard, stay focused on the job, and set goals for ourselves. But, when the opportunity for the big promotion arrives, we are passed over and the plum position goes to someone else.

The pass over has left you somewhat numb and you are wondering why and what you’re next move should be.

Take heart.

It does happen to many of us during our career. Here are some suggestions regarding your next move:

Don’t lose your cool – Resist the urge to barge into your boss’s office and throw a fit. This could adversely affect any chance of future promotion! If you must vent, it’s best to find someone “outside” of the company to talk to.

Don’t make any hasty decisions – Give the disappointment some time and space. No one should be making a quick decision so soon after a negative event. Instead, turn your attention back to your work and let that be your focus. You need the time to regroup.

Don’t vent to your peers – We’ve already touched on this, but it bears repeating; work peers are not the best audience to vent your frustration to. Such conversation usually makes its way back to the boss and that may not be good for you.

Later, after some time has passed, you can take positive steps to address the “why” regarding the promotion pass over:

Clarify the WHY– when the announcement was made, you probably were advised by your boss why you did not get the job. But, you may not have been in a state of mind at the time to really remember all that was said. Perhaps you can now circle back around with your boss and ask for additional clarification for the reasons. Don’t use this time to “debate” the merits of the pass over. Just use the time to get additional information.

Identify any possible problems lurking that might have contributed to the pass over – Perhaps you need to improve communication with your boss regarding your performance and what is expected for future consideration.

Find a mentor – If you don’t already have a mentor, now might be a good time to find one. They can help you identify underlying problems that might be roadblocks to future promotions.

Do an attitude adjustment – No one HAS to give you a promotion. By the same token, it doesn’t mean you aren’t worthy of one. Just avoid acting wounded and like a whipped dog.

Has this already occurred before? – If this isn’t the first time you’ve been passed over, it may be time you do some serious reality-check. If you are convinced your performance is great, perhaps it’s time you consider leaving the company and move on to a new one.

Getting passed over for a promotion should not derail you or your career goals. Learn from the experience, take the appropriate actions, and move on to a better place.

As a leading executive recruiter, Key Corporate Services has targeted relationships with many top companies in a variety of industries. Contact us today to speak with one of our team members.

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