STYLIST, December 12th 2022: ‘What is a “quiet promotion” and can you turn it into an actual pay rise?’

Have you had a ‘quiet promotion’ – and can you turn it into an actual pay rise? Stylist spoke to Victoria McLean, founder and CEO of award-winning career consultancy City CV, to find out more…

Below is a short excerpt.

The ‘quiet promotion’ is a common office experience, but what can you do to turn it into a real pay rise?

Potential warning signs include being asked to be ‘a team player’ or to cover someone who is off long-term, says Victoria McLean, founder and CEO of career consultancy City CV, although, as she notes, it’s more likely that “you are just assigned additional work rather than being explicitly asked so that you don’t have the opportunity to say no”.

When you see your workload doubling but your salary staying the same, while the people around you are somehow coasting through the work day and climbing the ranks, resentment can quickly set in. “When an employee realises they’re being quietly promoted, it can lead to frustrations and the feeling that you’re being taken advantage of – especially if the same thing isn’t happening to close colleagues,” says McLean. “It can also lead to stress, burnout and really impact your wellbeing.” Quiet promotion, it seems, is a seriously short-sighted tactic on the part of employers: it might seem like an easy way of saving money on salaries, but according to McLean it’s “bad for company culture and it often means employees start looking for a new job elsewhere”.

And maybe then a conversation takes place to recognise your extra efforts. But if this doesn’t happen, open communication is key, says McLean. “It’s so important to speak to your manager to explain how you feel, but make sure you have everything you want to say figured out first,” she adds.

And if they shrug you off? At worst, McLean says: “You’re left with a new skill set and experience you can put on your CV when you look for a role that better reflects the work you do with a company that will appreciate and reward you.” 

The article can be read in full here.

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