THE BRAZEN CAREERIST- Getting promoted: That is so last century
Can we all just stop talking about promotions like they matter?
A promotion has meaning when someone's moving up the corporate ladder at such a slow pace that every small step is grounds for celebration. But there are no more ladders, because no one stays long enough at a company to get up the whole ladder. And even if someone did try to climb, she'd probably be laid-off or off-shored before she got to the top.
So what's the point of a promotion? Titles don't matter because they're accoutrements of hierarchy in a nonhierarchical workforce. And people don't care about getting more responsibly that implicitly comes with a promotion; they want the right kind of responsibility– interesting work and a chance to expand their skills set.
So all that's left to justify continuing to talk about promotions is getting a raise. But the idea of a raise is so insane I can't believe we even talk about it anymore.
Here is a headline from Salary.com: "Raise Outlook Better than Employees Expected." The article goes on to say that the average raise was something just above three percent. Let's say four percent. This means if you were making $100,000 a year, you'll get $4,000 a year more.
So what? After cost-of-living and tax adjustments, perhaps you're looking at about $1,000, and that's not going to change your life in any significant way.
When someone tries to give you a promotion or insult you with a $1,000 a year raise, tell them you want something that really matters. Some suggestions:
1. Growth opportunities
2. Mentor opportunities
3. Flex-time opportunities
4. Entrepreneurial opportunities
Instead of letting last century's carrots dictate your workplace rewards, think about what's right for you, right now. What do you really need? You don't need a promotion. It's something else. Think about what would really make a difference in your life, and then make it happen. While the rest of your organization is focusing on titles and money, you can slip under the radar and get something truly meaningful.