Here’s a Quick Way to Get Promoted by a Gen Y-er

Here’s a Quick Way to Get Promoted by a Gen Y-er

May 29, 2013 Promotions

How Gen-Yers [aka Millennials or those born during the early 80s – 00s] Can Get Promoted in a Year by guest blogger, Lancel Joseph


geny-imageI’m accustomed to a smartphone with apps for everything, a GPS that can take me anywhere and fast food that can be microwaved and made edible in fewer than 60 seconds.  Yes, I am the typical Gen-Yer and I have everything at my fingertips. 

Nevertheless, it is unrealistic for any Gen-Yer to expect a promotion within a year.

As the most technologically savvy and internet dependent generation, we consequently lack patience – even at our jobs.  Promotions are important to our goals and we tend to frown upon anyone who gets in the way of our dreams.  According to Peter Sheahan in a recent article, Gen Y respects those who validate them for who they are now, and who they want to be.”


In addition, we always want to know if we’re on the right track when doing assignments because accomplishments and accolades move us one step further toward success. 


If you think our need for constant feedback is a problem, then blame it on our Gen-X and Baby Boomer parents who showered us with ongoing recognition.


We always want instant results and the ability to change course if things begin to go awry.  Obviously, this proactive nature and eagerness to learn and implement change make us feel entitled to a promotion on the job.  Our characters as Gen Yers make us confident that we DESERVE that highly coveted office, the pay raise and the new job title.

Not so fast Gen-Y! In talking to college alumni, I have realized that it does not take one or two years to get promoted.  Instead, we need to be patient and focus on gaining recognition by helping our bosses and respective companies become more successful.

From a personal and Gen-Y perspective, I don’t know what I don’t know.  I have a plethora of transferable skills that I’ve garnered while spending time in international and local settings for both school and work.  But I don’t know where my mind gaps lie or how to begin to fill them in.  Like the typical Gen-Yer, this obliviousness is compounded by the constant pressures from family and overly competitive friends who compel me to set lofty goals based on my skills and expertise.  Are we overwhelmed? You bet! Especially when Business Insider tells us what some successful people were doing around our current ages.

Meeting these expectations can be challenging but are still surmountable if we reframe our thinking in the following ways:


1)     Rise to professional stardom:


In the midst of the hustle to the top, no Gen Y-er should ever forget their job’s primary function.  Perfecting the job description precedes channeling talents and expertise into other areas and assignments.  Professional stardom demands consistent excellence while performing all duties.

A great workplace is a haven for great work; make certain that your coworkers lack reasons to NOT love you! A boss will not promote an unlikeable person.  Therefore, being sociable should complement your career ambitions.

Your comfort level increases with constant coworker interactions and any comfortable Gen-Yer would feel more inclined to use their initiative.  Being a team-player is awesome, but leaders get promoted.  Go the extra mile and inspire your coworkers to jump on board with an idea or two – even if it’s just some volunteer work at an animal shelter, or office sports, etc.  This would help you become much better at managing larger projects, more diverse personalities and being creative.


2)     Start e-Commerce on the side:


DOWNLOAD Melissa’s presentation to high school students on the very topic of making money on the web.


It’s somewhat of a Gen-Y thing to want what we can’t afford.  So cash may be a problem from day one.  There is no need for panic! We use technology to improve our daily lives, and we can certainly use it to shower our bank accounts.

For example, any Gen-Yer can take advantage of the Google/Youtube AdSense program.  You get paid for talking! Fresh, valuable and probably hilarious content can go viral easily.  Use social media to spread your ideas and thoughts. Watch your account’s available balance grow.

Another idea can be self-published eBooks.  If blogs aren’t your thing, then eBooks are a great way to exercise those writing skills that you boasted about in every cover letter during your job search.  Channel this talent into an interest, hobby or unique passion and create an eBook.  There is nothing to lose on the internet, besides a little pride, but there is much to be gained.


3)     Networking:


Whether in your company or at a local event, networking is always a great way to add some more neat tricks to your workplace arsenal.  Industry veterans are a source that every Gen-Yer should tap into.  They have been there and done it; their mistakes are the mirror images of our blueprint for success.

The advice from and exposure to other people during networking events impart certain insights that no one job can offer an ambitious Gen-Yer.  This will help with the rise to professional stardom.  Your situation is probably not as unique as you think.  Other professionals can help you bridge the gap between the realities of the work world and your expectations.

Most other people think we’re lazy, but progress and success are deeply coded in our Gen-Y DNA.  All this potential and no way to harness it!


Our irrational fear of wasting away can end up having a profoundly punitive effect on our careers if we don’t approach our jobs with caution. 


Everything should be earned, not promised nor given.  Before asking for a promotion, we Gen-Yers must ensure that there is no reason to receive “NO!”  Make your boss want to promote you.  Use your time on the job to showcase and improve your talents.  Ready, Set, Go prove you deserve to be promoted!



About the author

Melissa Llarena: is the CEO and career coach behind Career Outcomes Matter. Her craft is coaching top executives on how to dissect and deliver the perfect job interview. Her client base includes US-based as well as international business leaders with 15-plus years of experience who are undeniably really good at what they do yet simply want a strategic partner who can quickly fully understand their tangible and intangible contributions to effectively scale up their interviewing skills for the toughest interviews. Click to gain instant access to her 20-page interview preparation kit to gain an edge then schedule a phone call to see how she’d leverage her most powerful insights based on your unique situation -- all in time for your next interview.