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There might be a chance to move up!

Question :

Don't ask me how I know but my boss met up with a headhunter recently and I think he is in talks to move to another company. I know it sounds a little predatory to ask but my question is, if he does leave, is there a chance for me to get promoted to his position. I know the chances are slim as in comparison I’m not as experienced as he is but I have learnt the ropes and when he is out of town I’ve been charged with running the team and daily operations. How can I show upper management that I’m ready to step up? Or do you think they will just hire externally? It would be great to move up and hopefully on a higher pay grade. Any advice?


Posted by Jaz on Tuesday, 04 Sep 2012

Comments :

Louisa Yeung - Career Doctor

Posted Wednesday 3rd October 2012 06:42:00 PM


Hi Jaz, Firstly, Hong Kong is a very small market and you are bound to hear rumours about job changes here and there. While it’s good that you are so well connected to market activity it’s very important not to get distracted by industry ‘insider’ information. A professional headhunter should not give out this sort of confidential information and it’s not in your best interest to put faith in information obtained through the grapevine. However, it’s an open job market and people don’t tend to stay in the same role or company for their whole life so you can expect your boss to change positions one day and when this happens you could possibly have a chance of being promoted. To be prepared you should equip yourself as your boss’ ‘number-two’ but keep in mind you should be behaving this way irrespective of whether you want to move up the career ladder or not. This is part and parcel of your daily responsibilities and should be a focus whether you’re looking to be promoted or not as it’s important for your own professional development. To show your management team that you are ready to step up I recommend that you focus on your job content and core responsibilities and mirror the working standards of your boss. You should also voice your desire to move up the career ladder in your performance appraisal and seek guidance and constructive advice for areas where you can improve. Also, identify any skills gaps and address them quickly. Senior level people will acknowledge your efforts and you will be in a better position to be considered as a potential candidate when the position is available. You’ll also have the advantage of understanding the role and company and the management team knowing your potential. If you have done all of this, it’s just a matter of time before you will have the chance to progress your career. If the position does become available and an external candidate was appointed, you can still continue to gain relevant experience from another manager and work to equip yourself for new challenges and roles with potential future employers. Best of luck with taking the next step in your career and please leave a comment below if you have any further queries. Louisa.

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