5 Ways To Show You Should Be Promoted

It’s a good idea to be sure that a line management role would suit you before you try to get promoted to the position. 

This is most people’s first management role and a key first step into a career in management. Given it is such an important career move, it is important to try to make it a big success.

How do you know if it will suit you? 

And if it will, how can you show you should be promoted?

For a head start, check out our line manager training!

Should You Be A Leader?

People naturally tend to be either followers or leaders.

Followers are loyal, hard-working individuals who are the happiest doing their jobs best under instruction from someone else. A follower is not naturally a risk-taker, or confident about speaking out in public.

Leaders like to take charge of projects and drive things forward independently. They tend to be good, confident communicators and happy to speak up in public.

Are leaders more important than followers? No. 

Both leaders and followers are essential in the workplace. Leaders need followers, and followers need leaders. A team can not function without both types of people. 

If you are not a leader, you may not be a good fit for a line management role, or at least not currently. People change and grow over time, and so it may just be that you’re not quite ready yet. 

What Do Line Managers Do?

Line managers are the first layer of an organisation’s management structure.

They manage small teams of front line employees day-to-day to ensure that they perform efficiently and effectively.

They also act as information conduits and are responsible for passing information from their team up to senior management and from senior management back down to their team. 

Good line managers can transform the performance of a business.

Some studies show that an employee’s direct manager is responsible for 70% of the variance in employee engagement between companies.

For more details of the role, see: What Is A Line Manager?

What Do Companies Look For In A Line Manager?

Line managers must be a combination of:

  1. Organised: Line managers juggle multiple priorities. 
  2. Confident: Line Managers delegate tasks and maintain standards.
  3. Emotionally intelligent: Line managers must win the trust of their teams and be able to communicate clearly with them.

5 Ways To Show You Are Ready To Be A Line Manager.

The trick to getting promoted to line manager is to show people that you have the necessary skills to make a success of the role, and ideally also have some experience of management.

Demonstrate that you have the fundamental skills necessary to make a success of being promoted to line manager, and you are more than halfway there

Rule 1: Take on extra work and responsibilities.

To be a good line manager, you will need to work hard and take on a completely different role.

Demonstrating that you are happy to work hard and adapt well to new responsibilities will give your employer confidence that you will make the transition.

This will also broaden your experience, making the step-up to line manager easier for you to manage.  

Rule 2: Be consistent. Demonstrating potential takes time.

It takes time for people to notice things. They are busy with their own jobs. 

However, if you are consistent and patient, people will take notice. So if you would like to be promoted to line manager, start demonstrating your potential and keep at it. Don’t give up if people don’t notice straight away. 

Rule 3: Be enthusiastic in the workplace.

Happy teams are managed by enthusiastic, passionate people. 

To consider you as a potential line manager, your employer will need to see that you are energetic, enthusiastic present in the office. 

Take a little time to build good relationships with your line manager.

In an ideal world your work would speak for itself, but in the real world personal relationships matter.

Rule 4: Set goals and achieve them.

Line managers are responsible for managing their teams’ performance and reporting it to more senior managers.

They need to be able to set goals and measure performance to see if they are being achieved. 

By doing this for the tasks relating to your role, you will show that you have the right approach to be a line manager.

Rule 5: Speak up in office meetings.

Line managers have to be comfortable speaking up. 

Make sure that you speak up periodically in team meetings so that people see that you’re comfortable doing so. 

For more on management and office dynamics, check out our guide on micromanagement here!

2 Mistakes To Avoid.

People are aiming for promotion often fall into a number of traps if they’re not careful. 

Let’s look at two of the most common.

1. Put yourself forward

Your managers are not mind readers. 

If you would like to be promoted to line manager, you should ask for a promotion at an appropriate point. 

It is best to not rush into asking for a promotion.

If you ask once you feel that you have earned it, then it is much more likely that your manager will be receptive. Hopefully, they will have noticed how you have been performing and already have had the same thoughts.  

2. Don’t be a know-it-all.

Showing how much knowledge you have is not the route to promotion.

People don’t like ‘know-it-alls’, and managers don’t need to know everything.

They are responsible for ensuring that everything is completed by their team, not for completing the tasks themself.

Final Thoughts

You earn the right to be a line manager. It isn’t something that someone will give you.  

Demonstrate the right behaviours consistently, and others will notice.

Once people notice you for the right reasons, you are 80% of the way to the promotion you’d like. 

So make a plan and start executing it.

We wish you luck, although hopefully you won’t need it!

IMAGE CREDIT: Austin Distel ,Lindsay Henwood

About Ben Richardson

Ben is a director of Acuity Training which he has been running for over 10 years.

He is a Natural Sciences graduate from the University of Cambridge and a qualified accountant with the ICAEW.

He previously worked as a venture capitalist and banker and so had extensive experience with Excel from building financial models before moving to learn SQL, Microsoft Power BI and other technologies more recently.