How to Earn Your Boss's Respect and Get That Promotion

Ever wondered what it takes to be promoted? There are certain ways of interacting with your boss and of doing your job that can improve your skills and CV and show that you’re a capable member of the team and important component in the organisation’s success. This article gives some dos and don’ts to give yourself every chance of promotion.

By Clark Turner
  1. Don't ask questions you can answer yourself
    Yes, it is comforting to ask your boss when you lack confidence or feel you need their approval. However, you’ve been employed because your boss believes you’re capable of getting on with the job in hand. Take a step back and look at the problem from another perspective, ask a colleague for help, be resourceful and check the internet or any other resources available.
  2. Provide solutions, not problems
    Spend at least ten minutes thinking of possible solutions to a problem before going to your boss. It will impress your boss if you go to them with a difficult problem (that is, something not easily solved) but then pull the rabbit out of the hat and suggest ways to resolve it.
  3. Never apologise
    OK, I know it is somewhat drastic but there is a right way to approach this. To start with, an apology could get things off on the wrong foot and might show your weaknesses. Instead, impress your boss with what you have learned rather than your mishaps: "Perhaps, looking back, I would have…", "If we were to do this again I would recommend…" and so on.
  4. Keep it professional
    There are times under stress when it’s easy to get emotional or uptight. Emails can easily be misinterpreted – either the tone or the meaning. Write your response but stop! Don’t send it straight away. Leave it for at least thirty minutes, or even an hour, and then reread the original email and your response. It’s a safe bet you’ll have calmed down and can then send a much more productive and considered response. You don’t want to run the risk of sounding like a spoilt brat! Remember, your professional diplomacy will score you points with your boss.
  5. Go that extra mile
    Don’t be a “job’s worth”, but there are times when we have to act outside our line of duty for the sake of the team. Embrace any new challenges as a chance to add to your job skills and CV. This is something a boss will take note of and will bear it in mind when promotions are taking place.

Clark Turner is the founding editor of

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