“How could they pass ME up for that promotion?”


It happens, unfortunately. Good employees are overlooked for a promotion. It can be frustrating when it happens. And it’s normal to want to immediately quit. But by doing so who are you really hurting?

If it happens to you, keep things in perspective by considering your income and lifestyle. Avoid making impulsive decisions. It’ll adversely impact your personal brand. Do you want to be known in your profession as hot-headed? Or immature if things don’t go your way?  

If someone else receives the promotion instead of you, here are some things to think about – and it’s important to be honest with yourself when responding.

If you’ ll be reporting to this person, can you be a good team player? If not, then start searching for another job while maintaining professionalism. You don’t want to act out at your job. It’ll adversely impact your personal brand.

Instead of acting out at work, find a way to release your frustration. Talk to friends that do not work for your employer. Talk with family members or even hire a professional, such as a coach, to help you through this tough time.

As you begin your job search, practice your response to the question, “Why are you looking?” During my experience as an executive recruiter, you learn a lot about an individual from their response to that question.

In your response, do not mention you were overlooked for a promotion. It would appear to the recruiter as if you can’t handle situations when it doesn’t go your way. Instead, focus on wanting new opportunities and connect your response to what the new job would offer you.

If you will not be reporting to the person who received the promotion, then tough it out – especially if you like your employer. Think about the relationships you have built over time at work. Think about how you’ve grown in your responsibilities. Tough work circumstances help you stretch your coping abilities making you more valuable over time.

Work stinks when it doesn’t go your way. It’s easy to want to get up and leave. Challenge yourself to fight that impulsive behavior and keep things in perspective. Focus on how your lifestyle would be impacted if you didn’t have your income. Focus on your personal brand. Think long-term to fight being impulsive. 



Niv PersaudNiv Persaud, CFP®, CDFA™, CRPC®, is the Founder of Transition Planning & Guidance, LLC. Life is more than money. It’s about living the lifestyle you want and can afford. For that reason, Niv consults with clients on money, life and work. Her approach capitalizes on techniques she learned throughout her career, including as a management consultant, executive recruiter and as a financial advisor. Her services include spending plan, financial plan, divorce financial review, life strategy and professional progression. Niv actively gives back to her community through her volunteer efforts. She believes in living life to the fullest by cherishing friendships, enjoying the beauty of nature and laughing often — even at herself. Her favorite quote is by Erma Bombeck, “When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left and could say ‘I used everything you gave me’.”