Things to avoid if you want a promotion


Regardless of what stage you are at in your career, chances are that at some point, you are going to want a promotion. Whilst pretty much everyone is aware of the obvious steps to take in order to achieve this, there are some surprisingly trivial factors that may be stopping you from fulfilling your aspirations.

Not taking pride in your appearance

People’s first perceptions of you will start with how you look and if you’re not willing to present yourself smartly and professionally in the office, your boss will assume that you pay the same lack of attention to your work. If you have high hopes of climbing the career ladder, unfortunately you are going to have to make the extra effort with how you present yourself.

Hiding problems

It’s a fact of life that everybody makes mistakes from time to time. Whether you have fallen behind on a schedule, lost a key account or sent out incorrect information – it happens. At times like this it may be tempting to hide your error from your boss but realistically, the chances of it staying a secret are slim and when it does come out, it’s likely to be an even bigger problem. If an accident happens, be open, honest and explain to your manager how you plan to rectify the problem. This will gain you much more respect than simply ignoring the problem.



We’ve all had a boss that we don’t like but undermining their authority by repeatedly bad-mouthing them to your co-workers is simply asking for trouble. If you are seen to be gossiping about your boss or any other co-worker, this will reflect badly on you and you are unlikely to be taken seriously. If you have an issue with anyone you work with, it is better to discuss it with them directly or if you can, keep it to yourself and save the moaning for when you get home.

Saying yes to everything

Many of us make the mistake of saying yes to everything our boss asks us to do because we are certain that this will make us look good. The problem with this is if you say you are going to do something, you actually need to do it. As there are only so many hours in the work day, it’s important not to over-promise because you could end up looking bad if you can’t deliver. If you have no problem taking on extra assignments, just make sure that you establish reasonable time-frames with your boss so they know when you will realistically be able to get the work done.

Not showing any initiative

From time to time, you will need assistance from your boss – they are there to offer guidance after all. However, if you need approval for every little thing from changing the printer paper to setting your out of office, you’re certainly unlikely to stand out as management material. Whilst it is wise to seek clarification on the bigger projects, you should be able to complete your normal, every-day tasks without getting your manager involved.

Do you have any tried-and-tested tips for securing a promotion? Feel free to share your thoughts with us below.

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