6 Surprising Habits That Are Preventing Your Promotion


It’s that time of year. Again. Promotion time. In your mind, there is no one more deserving than your fellow developers than you. But, unfortunately, management doesn’t see it that way.

While your work is top notch, there are things you may be overlooking that are keeping you from securing that promotion. It could be anything from a perceived lack of confidence to not being assertive enough. You’re you. You’re just not an assertive type of guy.

But you’re a kick ass developer, know it’s time for that promotion and you feel you deserve one. You feel a lack of appreciation. If not where you are, perhaps somewhere else?

It’s a tough spot to be in, but you’re not changing yourself to fit the mold management is looking for. You’re not like everyone else. You’re unique and you want to be appreciated for the great developer that you are.

You’ve reached the point where you no longer want to put your time into the hands of the ungrateful. You might want to look for an opportunity where the workplace is a better fit, and that management appreciates you for your work, and looks over the other stuff. You produce results and you want to be appreciated, and eventually get that promotion.

Habits are tough to break, but perhaps you can change them.

Let’s take a look at the five habits you may find surprising, and that might just be keeping you from achieving that promotion.

At the end of this post, I feel you’ll know if it’s time to fix your habits or move on to a place where those habits aren’t really considered when assessing your awesome work.

1. You’re too darn nice

This can be perceived as not being aggressive enough and inconfident, afraid to speak your mind.

You’re wary of stepping on the toes of others. You say sorry too much. Apologize too often. While this would be seen as a great habit to have in most workplace environments, perhaps it isn’t in yours.

 2. You’re quiet and keep to yourself

You don’t speak up at team meetings. You aren’t proactive.

When someone says something that is so utterly wrong and you know it, you don’t tell them so.

How can management know your thoughts, if you don’t communicate them? They are looking for someone who speaks their mind. Those are the ones they tend to promote.

3. You think waaay too much

You’re always thinking way too much about how to make your code better, thinking of interesting strategies to integrate your code into a new product.

To management you seem aloof. You’re always thinking on the next piece of code. This isn’t something management sees. Sure. It comes out in your work, but your personality seems like your indifferent.

4. You don’t ask for much

If you deserve something, speak up about it. You deserve that promotion.

Now is the time to perhaps, demand it. Ask your manager to meet. Lay down why you should be receiving that promotion and be ready to defend yourself.

A lot of times, excellent work and candidates ripe for promotion are oblivious to management.

5. You’re too focused on the task at hand

This a great quality to have in the age of ADD. It, however can be seen by management as someone who does only what is asked of them and that’s it.

If you want that promotion, you need to step beyond your comfort zone to do a lot more than is being asked of you. Asking your team members if they need any help with any of their projects, It’s about taking initiative, being proactive, being aggressive.

You need to do more to become more. Think of ways that will show management you are more than someone who sits at their desk all day and completes tasks. If you indeed want it, you need to proactively take the steps needed to get that promotion.

6. You know technology. All too well.

You’ve been at your job for 3 years now and know all the technologies that are part of your day to day development work.

Perhaps your manager needs to see something more?

Maybe now is the time to educate yourself about all the new technologies out there and bring it up at team meetings. Make it known that you are taking online courses that will boost your effectiveness as a developer and will overall contribute positively to the efficiency of the team.

You want to share your knowledge and resources in order to propel the team and the company forward.

Offer to mentor other developers on your team and even others on some hot new technologies. That will gain you attention for sure. You won’t be just talking the talk but walking the walk in educating your team members, hence effectively driving the company forward.

They say that really, the best way to get that promotion is by going somewhere else.

Lots of developers out there prefer to strategically hop from job to job till they get what they want and what they feel they deserve.

Don’t take it that you should become a vagabond developer, always on the lookout for an opportunity. However, you need to consider where you want to go and what it will get you, then go for it. Whether it be a more respected title or a better salary. Or both.