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Glenford Smith | Why do promotions pass me by?

Published:Sunday | February 12, 2017 | 12:00 AM

Question: I read your column about desirable traits that employers want to see manifest in their employees. But I have a big problem. The traits you mentioned, I posses them. Why should I continue to be productive in my organisation when promotions pass me by? What should I do?


CAREERS: Thanks for reading the Gleaner Careers section. It is commendable that you see yourself as possessing the desirable traits that employers want to see manifested in their employees.

The questions you seem to be asking are: You see yourself as having what employers are looking for; why should you continue being as productive and your superiors overlook you; and what should you do?

Let me address the second question, first. Why should you continue to be productive? In a word, because you are being paid to be.

Many workers are in the exact spot you are in, and feel that they should not give their best because they feel things are not in their favour. They have to be reminded gently that they contracted to do certain things and their performance should not depend upon a promotion, or anything else.

So, in your current situation, the failure of your superiors to consider you for a promotion, unfortunate though it is, should not affect how you do your job.




Why do promotions pass you by? The answer to this question leads us to the first issue you raised, what you see yourself as being able to do. You say you have a big problem understanding why your superiors do not recognise what you have to offer.

It could be that, unlike what the article you read said, you think it's not okay to toot your own horn. It could be that you're capable in these areas and are performing well, and your superiors are unaware. If so remember, it is okay to toot your own horn.

The next factor could be your superiors aren't all that impressed by you. Yes, I know that you are sold on the idea that you are great in these areas. Find out from your boss though if you are doing as well as you think you are.

Which brings me to the third factor which could be that you are in fact a victim of favouritism. You could very well be. If you are, don't let this affect your attitude and how you do what you do.

What should you do? Do the best job you're capable with the very best attitude you're capable. You have done well to write to me because it presents an opportunity for you to benefit from what is happening.

You see, you can be empowered if you do not take it negatively. The American sage, Ralph Waldo Emerson, in his essay on Compensation wrote about it a century ago.

He said: "If you serve an ungrateful master, serve him the more. Put God in your debt. Every stroke shall be repaid, The longer the payment is withholden, the better for you; for compound interest on compound interest is the rate and usage of this exchequer."

- Glenford Smith is a motivational speaker and success strategist. He is the author of 'From Problems to Power' and co-author of 'Profile of Excellence'.