Purpose: Students learn how to ask for a promotion.
1. Students define “promotion.”
Explain to students that you talked about asking the right questions in the starter and about the need for a strategy in the first activity. Explain that you’re now going to combine those into a plan to request a promotion.
Ask students to define “promotion.” (Students might respond: job advancement, increased responsibilities, sometimes an increase in pay, etc.)
2. Students review the characteristics of a good employee.
Tell students that they’ve already discussed the need for a long-term strategy to get a promotion. Ask them to name some things that might be part of that strategy. Lead students to understand that part of their strategy could be keeping a checklist of what good employees do and making sure that they do those things. Ask students to recall from past classes some of the characteristics of good employees. (Students might respond: ability to manage resources effectively, communicating well with coworkers, being honest, getting to work on time, following company rules, etc.) Write student responses on the board.
3. Students discuss some of the guidelines they need to follow to be considered for a promotion.
Tell students that in addition to these examples of good employee behavior, there are some guidelines that they need to follow. Ask students to name some of the guidelines that they have discussed in previous sessions. Elicit from students the following guidelines:
- Use good listening and communication skills on the job.
- Ask for feedback from your supervisors. Be open to comments and constructive criticism.
- Look for a person who has been at your job longer than you have. Ask that person to teach you about the job and listen to their advice—their experience can help you avoid mistakes.
- Since a strategy is a long-term plan, it’s important that you continue to reevaluate and ensure that your strategy is working.
Write student responses on the board.
4. Students find ways to show their boss that they deserve a promotion.
Ask students to think of additional ways that they can show their boss that they are ready to be promoted. Write student responses on the board.
Explain to students that another part of their strategy for advancement might be to ask for increased responsibility. This shows that they’re eager to learn and work hard. It also shows that they believe in their own abilities.
5. Students learn how to ask for a promotion.
Explain to students that even when they prove themselves worthy of a promotion, their boss may not realize how well they are doing. Supervisors have a lot of responsibility and might need to be reminded of an employee’s worth to the company.
Ask students what they think would happen if they went into their boss’s office and said, “I deserve a raise. I expect more weekends off, money tomorrow, and a new car.”
Help students to recognize that aggressive behavior will not lead to success when asking for a promotion. Explain that the best way to let their boss know about their skills and accomplishments is to be assertive and to tell them about how they have handled their increased responsibility. One suggestion is to outline the steps they’ve taken and what they’ve achieved for the boss.
6. Students role-play requesting a promotion and recognize the importance of timing.
Ask for two volunteers to come to the front of the class and role-play asking for a promotion. Tell one volunteer to play the owner of an ice cream parlor. Tell the other volunteer to play an employee who wants a promotion to the manager position.
Tell the volunteers to begin the role play and ask the class to observe how the employee tries to convince the owner that they are worthy of a promotion. After the volunteers have finished their role play, have the class share their observations.
Tell students that they are going to watch another role play. Ask for two new volunteers. Tell the new volunteers that the roles and situation are the same, except that it is the afternoon and there are groups of children screaming for ice cream. The owner has just run out of ice cream cones. Tell the volunteer playing the employee to ask for the promotion. If the role play doesn’t demonstrate the situation well, give the two students additional directions to make the scene more stressful (e.g., the freezer broke and the ice cream is melting, the cash register will not open).
When the second set of volunteers finish their role play, ask the class to explain what was wrong with the employee asking the owner for a promotion when they did.
Lead students to recognize that timing is an extremely important part of their strategy. Tell them to make sure that their boss is in a receptive mood, that operations are running smoothly, and that the boss isn’t too busy and is able to listen to what they’re saying.