Are you looking for a promotion?

Your appraisal is often a good time to talk about promotion but too often managers can fob you off with targets that you have no idea how to meet. Make sure your objectives to promotion are SMART.

Setting objectives is a collaborative process. Both you and your line manager should have a stab at writing objectives, usually no more than 5.

Writing SMART objectives is not easy and takes time.

Once written, you need to test each objective to ensure that they are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-bound. If there is any room for a subjective opinion on whether a goal has been achieved, re-write it. You don’t want any ‘grey’ areas when you come to review them.

Where possible, focus on what you will produce, achieve and it’s impact, not what you will do.

Objectives are meant to stretch you and if you’re looking to be promoted ensure that they allow you to demonstrate you can perform effectively at the next level. Ask HR/line manager for a job description for the next level up and use that to inform your objectives.

Feedback is a gift, so be brave and ask for it in between reviews. Understanding how others view you provides valuable insight in to your strengths and highlights any areas that need developing. Again, this can inform your objectives and discussions regarding a promotion.

Next week I'll be talking about the key differences between Account Managers and Account Directors so that you can see where you need to put your energies into proving you're ready for promotion.

(Interesting article that you might find useful: http://www.forbes.com/sites/jacquelynsmith/2013/10/24/16-mistakes-employees-make-when-trying-to-get-a-promotion/)

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