One of the most important (and rewarding) things that a business can offer is supporting employees in reaching their professional goals. When it comes to your “star players,” you will want to reward them with increased responsibility if they want it. But how do you know if they are ready for a promotion? And if they are ready, what new role should they take on?
The following article was created from a range of experts who detailed their insights into how to make these decisions.
Below are 10 signs that an employee is ready for advancement and how to determine what kind of promotion they should receive.
1. They Ask For More Responsibility
When an employee asks for more responsibility, it means they have more capacity and are eager to help the entire team succeed. When they seek to know “what else they can do,” they are demonstrating they are ready for the next step. If they are actively anticipating their leader’s or team’s needs and taking initiative before deadlines, it is time for a promotion.
2. Acquiring New Skills Would Help Them Grow
The biggest pitfall is what is called the Peter principle, wherein people continue to be promoted within an organization until they reach a level of “respective incompetence.” Promote people who excel. You shouldn’t expect more of the same from an employee who has been promoted; the promotion should be a challenge that triggers the employee to develop new skills. So, look at the employee and ask yourself, “What is it that this person in front of me could learn to grow as a professional?” Use that concept to decide on their next step within the company.
3. They Consistently Exceed Performance Expectations
An employee may be ready for a promotion if they consistently exceed performance expectations, seek out additional responsibilities or demonstrate a strong work ethic. To determine the appropriate promotion, consider their skills, experience, and career goals, as well as the needs of the organization. Most importantly, have an open discussion with your people about their career aspirations.
4. Clients And Team Members Provide Positive Feedback
One key indicator of an employee’s readiness to be promoted is the feedback you hear from clients and the people and teams the employee interacts with. Listen for key input, such as, “They are knocking it out of the park, consistently,” “They show up engaged,” “They show maturity,” and, “I go to them for thought partnership!” These are clear signs of their readiness to take the next step in their role.
5. They Work And Think Above Their Pay Grade
A typical sign of readiness for promotion is working and thinking above their pay grade. When an employee is already performing at that next level, they demonstrate a clear readiness for promotion.
6. They Are Willing To Push Themselves
We strive when we are in the flow. The challenge should be slightly higher than the employee’s competencies for them to remain in the flow. If an employee is asking for a real, new challenge outside of their comfort zone, it is a great sign that they are willing to push themselves and grow—and that if they do not get a new challenge, they will soon be bored, which is the beginning of the end.
7. They Take Initiative Beyond Expectations
Employees can demonstrate that they are ready for a promotion in a number of ways: volunteering for additional work, taking initiative beyond what is expected, acing performance in their current role or reaching out to solve organizational problems and issues. Leaders can assess where discretionary effort is being expended to assess the type of promotion that should be considered.
8. They Consistently Operate At The ‘Next Level’
When an employee is consistently operating at the next-level step of business, relationships and leadership, they’re ready for a promotion. As a leader, you will feel proud to see that you are primarily operating in coaching or delegation mode. You also need to know your employees’ aspirations for growth. Moving up is not always the motivation for everyone. No one size fits all.
9. They Show Leadership Potential And A Strong Work Ethic
An employee who consistently meets performance goals, takes on additional responsibilities, shows leadership potential and has a strong work ethic is likely ready for a promotion. Determine the appropriate promotion by assessing the employee’s skills, experience, career goals and company needs. Have regular career development conversations and provide growth opportunities.
10. It’s Apparent From Development Conversations
Ideally, the manager and the employee have regular 360-degree conversations about performance, motivation and aspirations. Together, they will plan the personal and professional development of the employee, allowing the employee to grow within their role and for both parties to establish measurable elements, creating the conditions for a move. A fair leader would facilitate a move within or outside of the organisation.
This is a curated article taken from Forbes Magazine online.