An impressive individual is disappointed about not getting a promotion and calls me to ask what to do next.

Normally, I recommend a full analysis of causes to select the right solutions but this problem is hiding in plain sight.  He says, “A much less qualified person was picked over me.  They rigged the process for this person.”  I respond, “Why are you surprised?  That’s exactly how they picked the CEO there who is now failing in that role.  Do you really think that CEO and culture will suddenly start selecting excellence and character?”

One more time: people hire and promote who they are.  If you look across the table at them and see your integrity and talent, you have an opportunity.  If their values and abilities are not yours, you really have no chance.  Invest your time with employers who are a good match and fit for who you are and who you want to be.  It’s the single best way to have a great career and get promoted.


From the Teacher: Leadership Lessons with Dr. Saviak is a weekly column with the esteemed Joseph C. Saviak, Ph.D., J.D., M.A., M.S., Management Consulting & Leadership Training.