How to Turn Down a Promotion

no.jpg Bigg success is life on your own terms. Last time, we talked about how to use the five elements of bigg success to determine if a promotion is right for you.

A lot of people are afraid to turn down a promotion even in the best of times. Now there is even more pressure with the tight job market.

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There may be fear that you’ll become more expendable if you turn down a promotion. You’ll be more likely to be let go should another round of layoffs occur. In some business cultures, this attitude is more pervasive than others.

You may fear that you’ll never be offered another opportunity – that passing up this promotion means that you’re not interested in moving up. You may be interested in getting promoted, but this just isn’t the right time for you.

You may even be concerned that it will change how your boss treats you in your current job. You worry that it will change the attitude your boss has about you.

A graceful decline

You want to live your life on your own terms. If that means this opportunity isn’t right, then you need to find a way to gracefully decline it.

You still want to be viewed as a team player. You don’t want to put your current job or standing in the company at risk. Of course, there’s no guarantee of that, whether or not you accept the promotion.

So let’s talk about your strategy. How should you proceed?

Genuinely thank them for offering you the position

It is an honor and you should treat it as such even if it’s not right for you. Express that to them.

Respect the agenda of your boss

While you’ve thought about your terms and determined this wasn’t a good fit, obviously your boss thinks it is – that’s his or her terms. Be respectful of those terms and try to help your boss fulfill them. How?

Focus on what you can do, not what you can’t do

For example, perhaps you’re willing to accept some additional responsibilities while they train the replacement. You’re willing to take these duties on in the short run; you just don’t want to do it for any lengthy period of time.

Point how it benefits them to keep you where you’re at

For example, your current position may really play to your strengths. You know your job well and you believe you can make a more significant impact by staying put.

Quickly follow up with one or two specific examples

How have you made a difference recently? By helping your boss see how you help the company where you’re at, he or she is more likely to agree that it’s a good idea to keep you there.

Now obviously, this is going to be a very important conversation. So before you sit down with your boss …

Practice. Practice. Practice.

Practice with your significant other or a friend. Practice in front of a mirror. Practice until these five steps and the words you will say are clearly mapped out in your mind.

Life on your own terms is important. It’s also important to help the key people around you live their lives on their own terms. That’s bigg success!

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Please join us next when we talk about what your choice of car may say about you.

Thanks for spending your time with us. Until next time, here’s to your bigg success!

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(Image in today's post by svilen001)

3 replies
  1. Dougie Brisbane
    Dougie Brisbane says:

    I would also ask a lot of questions and discuss the reasons for the promotion. Remain professional and listen – do not cut the boss off while he is talking and do not be defensive. If your boss denies your request to decline the promotion, ask for a reason or politely ask if you can be switched to another department, or reconsider the promotion altogether.

    Reply
    • George & Mary-Lynn
      George & Mary-Lynn says:

      When your boss offers a promotion, it must be handled delicately and professionally. The opportunity to move up can also prove to be your downfall if you aren’t careful. Thanks for your additions to our post, Dougie!

      Reply

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