How To Get Your First Promotion


How To Get A Promotion At Work 

Flatlay with laptop and plants

When I bagged my dream job at the media agency I wanted to work at for years I was literally over the moon. I walked through those doors on my first day and I sat at my desk, in my first office job, in an environment I had never been in before and I was just in my element. I didn't care about anything else I just wanted to learn and I was just grateful to be there.

It's like that for most people when they bag their first real job out of uni, right? We don't really know our worth and often we feel like we owe it to our employer for having us. Really, it's always the other way around. I started learning that very quickly and I definitely owe it to my peers for making it very clear to me.

Once I had become accustomed to my role I decided that growth was the way forward, I made it my goal in my first couple months of employment in my first ever agency role to bag a promotion at work in a year.

Just note that I never went in at entry level and that would only make it harder for me given my previous experience but I was determined.

For those of you who want to bag a promotion at work fast and are not sure how to go about it, I am going to share some of my tips with you. First, my number one rule is that you must believe in your sauce. without that belief, things will not happen for you.

Know your worth and what you bring to your team.

So all these tips worked for me and are dependent on your manager, company culture and the role you are going for. I'm sure that no matter what level you are there are things you can take away from this post.

How to get a promotion at work in your first year? 


The first thing you want to do is read and understand the job specification you want to go for. Get it from your manager or HR and read it thoroughly, keep it saved in your docs and keep referring to it. 

Get a clear picture in your head about the role you will eventually transition into and think about how you can start learning and implementing actions to show that you are pushing to grow in the business. 

Many employers will say they expect you to already be working to your promotional level before you get promoted so start doing the job you want. 


If your manager doesn't know you want to be put forward for promotion how are you going to get it? Have a chat with your him or her and express your interest. Then ask for regular one to one meetings either weekly or fortnightly to check in on your progress and make sure you are on track and heading in the right direction. 

Use these conversations to get real, honest feedback from your manager. Make notes and work on anything that they say you can improve on. Also, use the time to express any concerns and ask for advice. 


I created an excel doc with all the specs found in the job role, I then listed all actions and tasks next to each to show how I was already fulfilling the role. 

However you decide to do it, make sure you are keeping your receipts. Don't go into your interview without evidence that you are performing at the level you are asking to be promoted to. They may not even ask for it but if they do at least you know you are prepared. 

Your company should also have some sort of programme that will allow you to track your progress, make sure you are constantly updating it and adding to it. This is something HR will look at and they also have a say in the decision so don't forget to go through the proper processes. 


To be honest, having a mentor was the best thing that I could have ever done. Being in an environment that I wasn't in before meant I had to watch my temperament when I would get annoyed or heated about a situation I would often ask my mentor for advice on how to best handle the situation and it helped me massively. 

One of the things I did to help me further in my progression was get a mentor. I found someone who worked in my department but wasn't linked to my team. He offered to mentor me and I wasn't sure at first but took it on in the end. 

In fact, much what I am telling you in this post I learned from my mentor. Big up Peter Anthony. 

In a nutshell... 

So, that is pretty much what I did in a nutshell. I got my promotion into an open role exactly one year and two months after starting the company. I also wasn't going to accept a pay rise that was less than what others in the same role were on. That's another post for another time but always make sure you get what you are worth. 

Like I said previously, this is my experience and what worked for me. Do what works for you but more importantly understand that it is never out of your reach. 

Do you have any tips for career progression? 

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