Questions to Ask Your Employer Before Accepting a Promotion

Questions to ask your employer before accepting a promotion
If you are thinking that saying no to a promotion is not a good idea, this is far from true. Sometimes, a promotion comes with many details that you would not want, like, for example, relocating. This is why you should understand the finer nuances of the promotion before you say yes.

A promotion might also mean that you step into a half-completed project, or more likely, take the place of someone inefficient and lagging behind in work. This can cause undue stress in your life, and will make the promotion not worth it. Also, when employers know that a certain task is difficulty to achieve, they try to motivate employees by giving them a promotion before letting them tackle it. In most cases, the end result is failure, and the loss of a job.

There are many people who regret accepting a promotion because of such problems. Being completely aware about the different aspects of the promotion and questioning your employer about it can definitely save you from making such a career debacle.

Important Questions to Ask Before Accepting a Promotion

What are the changes in the compensation, perks, and benefits that you are offering me?

This is perhaps the most important question from your point of view. With an enhanced designation, your role and responsibilities will increase. Hence, you will get a hike in compensation, perks, or benefits. Ensure that your monthly take-home salary has increased considerably after the promotion. If you are going to work for long hours at a stretch, divide your salary by the number of hours, and see if you are going to earn more after the promotion or in your current position.

Remember that in some companies, promotion may not necessarily increase the compensation, or its hike may be limited. Hence, it is important that you know about the monetary and allied terms of your promotion before you accept it. Have a talk with your boss and negotiate appropriately.

What will be the focus of my new duties for the first six months?

You should know about the immediate focus of your work, or you may end up completing a task that may not be a priority. Also, your performance will be judged during the initial period, and you will come across as an irresponsible person if you are not aware about the long-term and short-term goals of your department.

Understand if there are any areas of concern that you need to know about. Needless to say, asking this question to your superior will portray you as an employee with good analytical and planning skills.

What are the responsibilities that I am expected to shoulder?

Unless you know what responsibilities are expected of you, it will be very difficult for you to perform well. Take your prospective boss out for lunch, and try to understand the working of the department. Know what the immediate and long-term goals are, that need to be addressed. Know about the priorities, and tasks which can be taken up later. Apart from your routine work, if you are going to be part of some work-related committees or interview panels, be aware about the same.

If your work includes a lot of public speaking, you will have to gear up for that as well. Whatever the amount of work, plan it properly so that you will not be bogged down by the stress of meeting deadlines.

What is the current situation of the work, and what does it need to be?

It may so happen that the person who has the left the position might have piled on a lot of work which will have to be sorted by you. Before accepting the promotion, understand what the current situation of the work is, and how long it will take for you to correct and finish it.

This will help you understand about the feasibility, time management, resource allocation, etc., for the completion of the work. Asking this question will give you a clear picture of the work to be completed. You can then plan and execute the work accordingly. However, make sure that you are comfortable with excessive workload and long working hours.

What is the new working environment like?

If your new working environment is going to be excessively stressful and physically draining, while the financial benefits are not too many, you may reconsider accepting the promotion. Also, ensure that your cabin has enough privacy to complete your work without any distractions.

To know about the nature of your job, consult your new boss and get a few details about the work environment from him. You can also ask other people in the department about the environment. This will give you an idea about the working environment that the new position entails.

Who will be my reporting authority?

This is a very important question. Get to know a little about your prospective boss from your current boss. Ensure that he is not a ruthless taskmaster who will easily steal your credit. Also, it is necessary that any future advancement in the organization is not impeded by a selfish boss who will not allow your work to come to the forefront.

If you speak to other people in the department, you will come to know about his personality. This will also help you to impress him and deal with him in a better way.

Who all will be reporting to me?

Though many people may not give this question much importance, it matters a lot. Especially if your subordinates include people who indulge in spreading negative gossip that can tarnish your image. If you did not get along with them in the first place, they are bound to make matters worse for you when you get an authoritative position.

Find out about the issues related to people or performance which you will have to address immediately. Knowing about the strengths and weaknesses of your subordinates will help you to delegate the appropriate tasks to them and deal with them in a way which they understand best.

What is the future growth for this position?

Don’t make this question sound as if you are asking for too much, too soon. Take your own time and pop it in the flow of the conversation. Do not accept a promotion without giving the future of your career a thought. Think about utilizing this position in such a way that it will help you to climb the ladder of success.

If it is hinting towards stagnated career growth with no opportunities for advancement, you may have to reconsider your decision of accepting the promotion. However, if it helps you gain a position among the top executives in the organization, then it is advisable that you accept the promotion.

Ask your employer about the challenges involved in the taking up a new position. You must know exactly which subordinate can act as a link between others and you. You can then make him your associate. Ensure that you know how much traveling comes with your new position, or you will practically end up living out of your suitcase. Apart from this, you need to first ask yourself if you are capable enough to handle the responsibility, encounter stressful situations, and take important decisions.

Now that you know about the questions to be asked to an employer before accepting a job promotion, you will be able to take a level-headed decision. As you will be constantly judged, add value by delivering innovative working practices which will benefit the organization.

Tips for Quitting Your Job Gracefully

Today, finding your dream job and being happy with it is like finding a soul-mate you can spend the rest of your life with. There was a time when people hesitated from changing their jobs too often. But, now these decisions seem to be made in the blink of an eye. There are many reasons why you may be planning to quit your job. May be you don’t get along with your colleagues, you are burnt out by the job pressure, you have decided to re-locate or your boss may be simply making your work life miserable. But, then resigning from your job always gets tricky. You don’t want to annoy your present employer because if your prospective employers were to ever make a background check on you, which they will, your previous employer’s unhappiness towards your behavior while resigning from the job could pretty much send your resume flying into the rejection pile of your new interviewer. And I never support the idea of leaving your company without serving the obligatory notice period or even without giving a prior notification of your intentions to quit your job. If you do that, you will be classified as an absconding employee. Not such a great reputation for your career growth in future.

How to Resign Gracefully from a Job

– The first person at your workplace who should know that you are resigning from your job is THE BOSS! Yes, I typed that in capitals to emphasize. Most of us often make the mistake of not informing the boss FIRST. Do not tell any of your colleagues that you are quitting before you tell your boss, even your closest friend at work. People gossip and your boss hears it all from the office grapevine. It will be very ugly and uncomfortable for you if your boss asks you about it even before you tell him/her on your own. If you don’t leave a great impression, he/she will end up being annoyed. Do not even ask about the things angry bosses can do.
– The worst part about the process of resigning from your job is announcing to your boss about your decision. It will come as a shock to him/her and you need to make it as smooth as you can on both of you. Politely explain why you have decided to quit the job with a believable reason. Don’t end up being aggressive no matter what your grievances may be. Adopt a policy of keeping mum about them now that you have decided to quit.
– Present a formal letter of resignation to your boss. Request their acceptance. It is good to have a legal document as a record for future’s sake. Keep your resignation formal and to the point. You can do the explaining verbally. Do not forget to express your gratitude towards the company and your boss.
– Your last month on the job, how are you expected to behave? It gets a little awkward to serve the last month of your tenure in the company. The entire management is informed that you have planned to leave. People will ask you several questions. Answer them patiently. Be affable. You certainly don’t want to be the new subject of their tea-time gossip.
– Since you are leaving now, friends can turn foes. Well, it is a rare case but someone who has hated you all along but been nice to your face, may just jump with their claws on you now. The tension may just worsen at the end. Never ever be bad even when you are leaving. It is just a matter of few days before you will be gone. But, mostly your colleagues will be nice to you during the end of your term.
– Fulfill the formalities of an exit interview. Most companies have a procedure for processing the resignation of an employee. When you leave, they will formally ask you about the reasons for your resignation. Don’t start with a list of complaints towards your bosses, colleagues and the company’s management. No one takes it that well. Don’t use an exit interview as an opportunity to vent your anger and job frustrations.
– Meet your targets even for the last month of your tenure. Just because you have decided to quit your job, doesn’t mean you can do whatsoever you like. Complete all your work commitments before leaving the job. Doing so, you will also earn the appreciation of your seniors and bosses and they will be more co-operative with you. You will also set an example for other employees in the office.
– If you are amidst a project, I’d recommend you to wait for it to get over before you announce your resignation. However, if it is absolutely necessary for you to leave your job now, make a blueprint of the project, compile all the work done so far, make a list of the future goals along with all your tasks and responsibilities, so that the company is not left to start work from scratch.
– Making an employee referral for filling up your job position will save up recruitment costs for your company. Also, they will thank you for your assistance and co-operation to prevent any inconvenience to the company because of the job vacancy.
– If your employer tries to retain you by offering an improvised salary package or a job promotion, you can decide to stay if the paycheck was a problem and you are interested in the offer. It’s not odd if you decide to stay after previously making a decision to leave the company. But, if you don’t want to stay back still, politely refuse the offer.

If you quit your job gracefully, you will always leave a possibility for yourself to be able to return to the company in future in case a great position opens up. Companies often hire ex-employees to fill up better job positions, it greatly reduces the training costs for them. But, you need to leave scope for that in future when you quit your job now. And, think about it. You are most likely going to take up a job in the same industry. So, you do not know what contacts your bosses may have in their networks. Don’t forget to submit any property given to you by the company as a serving employee. If things go well when you quit your job, you could probably ask for a reference too. Even when the circumstances under which you submit your resignation may have been difficult, always resign gracefully.

Things to Consider Before Changing Your Job

It is a dream of every individual to have a high-flying career with a lucrative job and a towering position in an esteemed global organization. Every person is on the lookout for a better opportunity even if he is working with a good company that gives a considerably good pay package. When a prospective employer lures you with an attractive salary package and added perks with a higher position, you are tempted to take the leap. In this situation you may get confused whether you should accept the offer or continue with the current company. Mostly you will end up going with the new enticing offer. But wait! Have you really given it a serious thought? Have you found out what exists beneath the glossy surface of the new offer letter? Have you done SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) analysis of both the companies before switching your job?

You should do some research about the new company before changing jobs or else switching to a new job can turn out to be a mistake. This is exactly what happened with Sean. He was working with an MNC at a junior position for almost 2 years. He was about to get a raise and promotion in a matter of few months. Another organization offered him double the wages and benefits. Blinded by the prospects, he switched his job without finding out more about the company. In the new organization, he had to work at uncomfortable timings to meet the unrealistic targets with stringent deadlines. He later found out that the perks were directly related to the performance of achieving targets. He no longer had a work-life balance. He compared his companies and found that he had a comfortable job with a decent salary at the earlier organization and badly regretted changing the job. He could no longer take the work pressure and had to take up a low-paying job in another organization. If you don’t want to end up in a situation like Sean, you will have to take calculated risks.

Evaluate Your Prospects
Confusion regarding changing a job or continuing with the old one is common. Well, this can be a situation with most of us especially when we are planning to change the job for first time in life. In these circumstances, it becomes essential to compare every aspect of the new and the current job. Here are few questions you should consider before you decide in the favor of or against a new job opportunity.
Can you trust the new company for achieving your long-term career goals?
Your first move should be to gather as much information as possible about the new company. Try to find out if the new company will help you in growing financially and technically. Inquire with other employees of the company about the business, expansion plans and market standing of the company. You may also search the Internet for the news, balance sheets, market value and third-party assessment of the organization on different forums. It is essential that the company you are switching to is a growing organization. The organization should also have a deep regard and respect for its human assets. You can also check their website for “Best Practices” or “Best Employer” awards. Try to find out if there is no immediate merger or acquisition from another company planned for your new organization. If there is, then your new job can be at stake in future. In such a situation, it is always better not to switch to a new job.
Does the company have a healthy and conducive work environment?
When you go for an interview just observe the culture of the organization. Contemplate if you will fit in. Check how the hierarchy works. Calculate how your qualification and experience fits in for the job profile. Understand the scope of growth you will have in terms of experience. Assess if the required job is going to be challenging enough for you. If possible, inquire with your friends why the person you are replacing left the job in the first place. This will give you a fair idea about the exact working conditions in that organization. If it has anything to do with the work pressure or the person in-charge, switching your job might land you in a similar situation. Also, check for the terms of employment and if there is any legal bond involved which will not allow you to quit the job even if you want to. Keep an open eye for job protections like Unions and whether they will come to your rescue (new employee) in case of a problem.
What are you going to add to your experience?
A person who works is continuously looking forward to acquiring new knowledge and shouldering bigger responsibilities. If you are really going to learn something good after getting into a new company that you cannot learn while you are in your current company, then you surely should go ahead with the new job! If you are getting learning opportunities in the current company, you need not change the job as it will help you progress in your career.
What is the salary hike and what will be your duties?
Check out what salary package they are offering you and out of which, how much money you will be getting in hand (after the deduction of certain taxes from the salary). Sometimes the figures of salary package are bloated to give a wrong impression. You also need to think if your current salary is better than the one you have been offered. If there is a negative difference (i.e., if your current salary is better than the one offered to you), then you should give a serious thought before making a shift to a new company. Even if the salary is more, you should understand the expectations from the new organization in terms of work thoroughly before signing on the dotted lines.
Will you be eligible for any future increment in salary? When is it scheduled?
Even if your current salary is less than what you are going to get in the new company, just check if a salary increment is going to take place in the near future from the current employer. If yes, then how soon will you get it? Along with this, you also need to check out, how long it will take for the salary to increase in your new company? This will really help you in making sure that after a certain period in future, you will get a proper salary. If your current company is about to give you a salary hike which would be comparable with the salary offered by the new company and promises that you will eventually get more, then it is better to not take up the new opportunity. (But do make sure that you get the salary hike and other perks on time!)
What are the benefits and perks offered by the new company?
It is important that you take up a job with an organization who is an Equal Opportunities Employer. Benefits like training from reputed institutions, bonus pay, travel plans, health and medical plans, retirement plans and insurance should be offered by the new organization. The new organization should also be fair in giving rewards and awards for performance-driven initiatives.
What are your future prospects with the new company?
Try to figure out if you will get a good opportunity in future (in terms of projects to work on) after you work on the initial project in the new company. Compare it with the future prospects that you have in current company and choose the best one.
Will you achieve a good progression in your career?
Every person wants an upward-growing career graph. At an entry-level position, you may like to learn from scratch, but assuming you already have some experience it will be going back to basics and proving your mettle all over again in the new company. Just calculate your total experience in the current organization and find what role you will get in the new company. If the work you will get is going to be of higher level than your current work, then you can surely go ahead with the new job.
Will you be able to maintain a sound work-life balance in the new job?
Like your career, your personal life is equally important. Understand if the new job will not claim the quality time which you like to spend with your family, friends
and for pursuing leisure activities like traveling, reading, sports, etc. Your new job should enable you to multitask your responsibilities in your professional as well as personal life. Check how many leaves you are entitled for, in your new job. In case of women employees, what is the maternity leave structure? Find out if you could work extra as a compensation, whenever you have to leave your office early (in an emergency).
Job Change Checklist

– Understand the job requirement and your role in the new company.
– Calculate the in-hand salary which you will get per month.
– Check for your position in the organizational hierarchy.
– Understand your growth prospects both in terms of salary and position.
– Understand their recognition and reward scheme.
– Do your homework about the new company and new department.
– Understand the work-culture of the organization and contemplate if you fit in well.
– Check out the Employee Policy of the organization.
– Check out the Health and Safety Policy of the organization.
– Check how much cost and time you will spend in commuting.
– Check for special amenities like health club memberships, medical assistance, etc.

Just a piece of advice before signing off – too much of job hopping on your resume will not create a good impression on the prospective employers. Hence, calculate the pros and cons before taking the decision and you will end up with a better employer. If you are confident that you can do better in the new company, just go ahead!

How to Choose a New Career in Your 30s

Choosing a new career in your 30s can be an exciting proposition for people who are passionate about turning their hobby into a career. A decade ago, many traditionalists would have scoffed at someone who thought of changing his career midway, but today, many new avenues have opened up and many people are taking a shot at a second career. There can be a number of reasons why you are contemplating making a career change, but whatever the reason may be, you need to ensure that you have a plan of action in place. There is a certain amount of risk involved, as in most cases, it is not only a single individual but, an entire family that is impacted by this change. So, it is important that you consider important things before changing your job.

Reasons for Making a Career Change

– Many people feel that they have devoted a lot of time and energy to pursue their dreams and now, as they have to support their families, they should try to look for a better paying job, even if it means getting into something which is not as per their aspirations.
– There are a lot of people who want to work for themselves. These entrepreneurial individuals want to put the effort and hard work in their own enterprise, so that they get the maximum reward for their work.
– Many working professionals pursue higher courses in order to boost their resume. This opens new avenues for them, and allows them to find a better paying job.

Choosing a New Career

– Thoroughly research all the opportunities that the new career has to offer. You need to be informed about the future prospects of a particular industry and the qualifications and skills needed to succeed in this field. It is very important that you get all this information before you quit your current job.
– Pen down your expectations and your aspirations so that you clearly know what the new job should ideally offer you. You have to ask yourself why you are making a hop. Is it job-satisfaction, extra-money or better working hours? Once, you have a clear picture in mind, you can then narrow down your search to industries catering to your needs.
– If you are unable to make a complete assessment of your skills, you can take the help of professional career coaches who can help you in planning a new career. There are numerous books on this subject and you can take their help as well. You should be confident on your abilities and aware about any weaknesses so that you can get the right job for yourself.
– While starting a new career, it is important that you are open to working at new places, as it can be the case that the city you are living in, doesn’t offer the desired opportunities.

These were some things to consider before changing your job. Selecting a new career takes a lot of determination and you should be confident that your new career will help you achieve greater heights. We would like to end this article by remembering Robert Frost’s poem “The Road Not Taken”.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.