How to promote from within

Being the head of a fast-growing business in the peak of a big recruitment drive is a truly unique experience. The office atmosphere is full of electricity, everyone’s pulling the stops out and you’re crunching figures rapidly.

While this is certainly an exciting time, it’s also pretty hectic, and leaves a lot of room for things to go wrong. If you’re looking to promote managers at your business, then you need to make sure you’re going about it the right way. In the recruitment world there’s nothing better than truly understanding what the client is looking for, working with them to form a concept and then executing within the marketplace.

However, here are some valuable pointers to keep in mind if you are on this journey.

First of all, be sure to keep your organisational chart flexible. Many CEOs seem to be in the habit of taking on new talent, and dumping the new hires wherever their existing organisational chart happens to dictate. If you take this course of action, you may end up spreading your existing managers a little too thin, overworking them and making their performance suffer. It will be much better for you to put new employees into teams which are headed by people who already report to one of your managers, particularly when you’re onboarding a large number of people at one time. Ideally, you should aim for a structure where no supervisor has more than four or five reports. This will stop the workloads piling up too rapidly, and will ensure that your organisational chart stays sustainable.

Next, look internally. When you’re in the middle of a growth spurt, it’s extremely important that the company culture is kept more or less as is. Your company culture is what dictates the company’s future prospects, and has an intimate link with the work you did to bring it from an idea to where it is today. In a lot of cases, it can also be one of the main reasons why talented people work for your business rather than something more established. Unless you have to import your managers from somewhere else, make a point of promoting people who are already very familiar with the company culture. Hand pick those people who are showing great leadership qualities, and then organise some sessions with a coaching firm such as Frosch Learning.

Try a buddy system to ensure that your new managers are settling into their new roles as smoothly as possible. This is especially important if your business is particularly small. When you’re the only employee who’s been bumped up into their first managerial role, it can be a very strange and daunting experience. After being used to working within a team dynamic for so long, this person finds themselves at the head of one, and suddenly having to deal with all the responsibilities that come with their new role. You can mitigate the shock of this by promoting your managers in pairs wherever possible, or assigning established managers to buddy up with the newly promoted ones. You may feel like you’re wasting precious resources here, but you’ll benefit in the long run from having more developed managers.