Promotions are coveted prizes in organizations across the country and the world. Considering that promotions usually come with a hefty salary bump, increased prestige, and a title that opens future opportunities, most employees are glad when they arrive. After all, they worked hard for them. It’s a badge of success that validates all those extra hours and working to meet those pressure-filled deadlines.
Despite the promise they offer, promotions can be the death knell for a career within the company. In fact, more than half of new executives fail within their first 18 months after promotion. Some failure may be attributable to the much higher expectations. Other times, the pressure may have been too intense, or the new job simply wasn’t to the employee’s liking.
Despite the fact that there are natural reasons why a promotion may turn out to be undesirable in the end, many of these failures never had to happen at all. They resulted from newly promoted employees falling into four distinct traps, as Ron Carucci, managing partner at Navalent, explained in Forbes Magazine. These traps all involve difficulties adjusting to the new role. The key for newly promoted employees is to display confidence and establish themselves as prepared for the new role, while focusing on avoiding these pitfalls.
The Larger-Than-Life Persona Trap
New executives may quickly find that team members talk about them and suggest they have characteristics that may be untrue. For this reason, it’s crucial to consider how your actions will affect others’ perceptions of you. Make sure that your actions leave positive impressions.
The Megaphone Trap
After being promoted, everything managers say and do can be thought of as being spoken through a megaphone. Even small talk can take on a life of its own. Fight back against the megaphone effect by measuring actions and words to send the desired messages.
Loss of Unsifted Data Trap
At lower levels of the totem pole, employees become accustomed to hearing unvarnished information. When they get promoted, suddenly, information is sifted because people fear consequences and want to present information in the most positive light for themselves. To combat this, establish trustworthiness and transparency with the members of your team.
The Relationship-Change trap
When former colleagues become subordinates and former superiors colleagues, awkward or uncomfortable changes in relationships may be bound to happen. Reset boundaries with conversations about things like new priorities, accessibility, and information flow. This sets clear expectations for all parties.