Don’t Promote Your Best Techs, but Give Them a Raise

he natural order of things is that you work hard, become proficient in what you do, and then get promoted to management, right? That’s how companies often work, and while sometimes it’s an effective strategy, it fails miserably in many cases. Why? Because “managing” is not like “doing.”

What does that mean? Well, let’s say you’re really good with customers—have a great rapport, and they trust you. You work quickly and accurately, and people praise your work. You’re reliable and hard working, and the business would be better off if everyone in the field worked as you do.

Different Jobs, Different Skills

But, are you good at training others? What about paperwork? What about handling sensitive issues, like requests for leaves of absences and coaching someone through a performance improvement plan?

To keep reading, click here: Don’t Promote Your Best Techs, but Give Them a Raise

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5 thoughts on “Don’t Promote Your Best Techs, but Give Them a Raise

  1. Do people get promoted without first indicating their interest in and desire for promotion?

    1. Often management says: Hey, you’re great at your job, we’d like to keep you and give you more money– but you need to take the Faustian deal of “being one of us”. We can’t give a grubby technical peon that kind of cash– gotta deep concern about earnings equity among the proletariat, ya know?

      Works out sometimes… But I’ve seen several folks miserable or fail doing it… They have to leave the company in order to return to technical work. Or they (maybe) become addicted and accustomed to the compensation — they’re unhappy, their team is unhappy, and management must cover up… No mistakes on management’s side, of course; so few people walk on water daily like them.

    2. If you want to get promotion – you need to not only say it – but prove through action that you are ready for it and deserve it. If you don’t speak up – you have no one to blame but yourself.

  2. There’s a big difference in performing a job well and being able to teach/guide/supervise others. Some people are great team players and performers but can’t effectively show others how to do the job they do as they perform by self-motivation. Showing others, means they have to stop performance of job and explain all the steps.
    A great trainer/ supervisor is not the best performer but can encourage others to perform and doesn’t feel uncomfortable doing followup while showing others how to do job.
    A good performing worker should be better paid than a poorly performing worker but they aren’t necessarily a good supervisor or trainer. Giving person a title is not always the best way to treat good workers. Companies need to stop using this as sole reason to give someone a needed raise.

  3. Having worked as an engineer for a very long time, I’ve seen this too many times. A good engineer gets promoted to management as a sole justification to pay them what they are worth. They wind up miserable because they don’t have time to do what they are good at, they effectively “fail” as a manager and get demoted or fired.
    It’s different if the good engineer wants to see if they are a good manager but then they have skin in the game to try and make it work.

    A lot of companies don’t have a pay structure that allows someone that is a good engineer to be paid “enough” as an engineer, so the title/job change. That is a fault of the company, not the engineer.

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