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When Promotion Lowers the Bar

When promotion lowers the bar and the quality of your talent pool. This is the picture I see when people who are not near ready for the role are promoted only to save money.


Fatal mistake!


This is what is going to happen:


- The person will feel inadequate in fulfilling the job, especially if support and training don't accompany the promotion because the role is incompatible with the person's skill set.


- To feel less inadequate, the person then devalues the role to a level where (s)he feels more competent. The delivered competence will soon be matched with lowered expected competence & performance because the management now matches their expectations to the reduced salary.


- If all goes well, the person eventually pulls through and rises to the job. If not, the person resigns within six months or so.


- The company will struggle to find a competent person for the already normalised and budgeted lower salary and hires a mediocre performer.


- Expectations towards the role and delivered performance will never be at the original level.


- The company lost the game and settled for mediocrity because that's all it can afford with the budget established when the person got promoted to save on the payroll.


This is the vicious circle I have seen many times when we opened new hotels. At first, we pay for the best talents, but as they leave, they are replaced by average ones through promotion or external hires.


That is why I am always very cautious about internal promotions. On the other hand, there are many cases when the promotion is well deserved. How do you know? It is reflected in the salary:-)))


Have you seen this happening in your industry?




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