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Career Advice

Is accepting a big promotion always a good thing?

Promotions are usually a sign that something’s going right for you at work, but they aren’t for the faint of heart — the impact one could have on your life should be taken very seriously. Here are some things to consider before deciding if a promotion is right for you.

Ask why the person previously in the role departed

Stephanie Taylor Christensen, an editor, freelance writer and content marketer, writes on LearnVest’s website that you should ask this question when weighing a promotion: “Why did the previous manager leave?”

She features commentary from Kathleen Steffey, CEO of Naviga Recruiting & Executive Search.

“A company is only as good as its executive leadership, so it behooves you to figure out if you’ll be supported by your higher-ups. One way to do some detective work is to inquire about why your predecessor headed for the exit, and how long it took them to do so. If, for instance, their departure was swift, it could be a sign that the C-suite had an unrealistic timeline for results. ‘Does the employer understand [you’ll need to] ramp up and learn about the business, or do they expect someone to jump right in and impact revenue immediately?’ Steffey says. Asking what your 30-, 60- and 90-day goals are can also provide more insight on this.”

Steffey later tells the site about how to learn more about the former employee’s experience on LinkedIn, and to question if the company gave them the resources to excel.

See if you’ll get training

Chances are, if you’re getting promoted, you already know many of the platforms you’ll be required to use if you accept the new role.

But if that’s not the case, you’re going to want to find out if your employer will help fill this gap by providing any training. Are there any courses you’ll have to take, tutorials to watch, workshops or off-sites to attend?

Sharlyn Lauby, founder of HR Bartender, president of consulting firm ITM Group Inc., and author of Essential Meeting Blueprints for Managers, told Glamour more about this.

“If the company wants to promote you, they should invest in your success — and you can take that investment anywhere. Understand before you accept the job if they will provide you with training, or if you will be on your own.”

Figure out who you’ll be working with

Andrew G. Rosen, founder and editor of Jobacle.com, writes in U.S. News & World Report about how you should figure this out before moving forward with a promotion offer. After writing about how you should ask about the potential for more forward growth at the company, he writes:

“If the answer is not obvious, do not be afraid to ask. You should be aware of the next stop on your career train. The last thing you want is for this promotion to bring you down a path with a low ceiling — or, worse, a total dead end. What kind of staff are you inheriting?

Find out what comes with the job

Joel Garfinkle, executive coach and author of Getting Ahead: Three Steps to Take Your Career to the Next Level, told Glassdoor that you should ask about what you’ll be working on when you get promoted.

“More money and a better title don’t always equal a better quality of life. For example, if a promotion takes you from working a 40-hour workweek to a 60-hour workweek, that’s something you need to consider. If you travel now 10% of the time and the new position is going to have you traveling 30% of the time, again it’s something you’ll need to factor in.”

Keeping these factors in mind will help you make a more informed decision when weighing a promotion offer.

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