So you’ve been offered a promotion at work! This is great news, right? You may be feeling a mix of excitement and perhaps even anxiety. How do you know if it’s the right decision for you? Here are some things to think about before accepting that promotion.
Often we feel like there’s this pressure to do ‘the right thing’ – the next step in our career path or towards a goal. But what if it isn’t something you’re supposed to be doing? I’ve been thinking about this lately as I work with clients looking for Clarity on their next steps forward.”
If you are considering the next step, next level, or even next chapter in your career, determine what that next opportunity does for you. Be curious about it and see how both aspects – getting clear on where we’re going and understanding if this aligns with who we want to be or not–shape our decisions so they can better support us along life’s journey.”
If you’re unsure whether or not to accept a promotion, think about how it will affect your day-to-day life. Will you be happy in the new role? What kind of additional responsibilities will you have? Is the extra work worth the extra pay?
Weighing the pros and cons of a decision can be helpful, but sometimes we need to go with our gut feeling. So trust that instinct if you strongly sense that a promotion isn’t right for you.
Here are some questions that are important to ask yourself. First, why is it important to you? What I mean here is, what does this promotion do for you? Who does it allow you to be? What does it allow you to have? Why is it important to you in your leadership, in your life? Does it alignin a positive way with the other areas of your life that are important to you? Because if not, it could take you in another direction that isn’t favorable.
The most important thing is, to be honest with yourself. If you’re not comfortable moving up in your career, that’s okay! There’s no shame in admitting that something isn’t for you. The key is to make a decision that feels right for you and that you can be confident in.
If you’d like a little more help, then consider this exercise. It’s a bit of a brain-twister but can help you extract more relevant information to make a well-informed decision.
Here’s a brain twister that can help you determine if it’s a fit. It’s in the form of a Cartesian Quadrant, and what I encourage you to do is to consider the answers to these four questions.
We’ll use your potential promotion as an example.
- What will happen if you do get the promotion?
Maybe you make more money, and it helps support your household in a bigger way. It might make you feel more validated for your efforts. It could be an essential step to helping more people. Be clear on what the answers are. Do these answers align with your career values?
- What will happen if you don’t get the promotion?
It could be that you might feel that it would be okay. You might be disappointed, but perhaps it was a big stretch for you, and you’re okay not getting it now. But, on the other hand, it could be a good practice run, and you’d get some good visibility by putting your name in the ring, and that’s good information too.
- What won’t happen if you do get the promotion
Maybe you’re not home as much. This could be that it would require more help at home and perhaps more time away from the family. But, on the other hand, if you are aware of this going in, it could be a choice you are willing to make, and you have a plan in place. Or, it could be that family is something you don’t wish to sacrifice.
- What won’t happen if you don’t get the promotion?
It might be that I won’t have to travel as much, or I don’t get to purchase my dream home just yet.
Take these questions and put them on a piece of paper, and fully consider your answers. Be curious and open about what comes up. Consider how this new information helps you make decisions aligned with who you are and what’s most important to you.
These quadrants help you to dig under the surface of your next choice and tap into your own inner Clarity, and get the answers you deserve!
So if you’ve been offered a promotion, congratulations! But don’t feel like you have to say yes right away. Instead, take some time to think about it, get some Clarity, and trust your gut. You’ll know what the right decision is for you.