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Could a promotion be a recipe for disaster?

Not every step up is a step in the right direction. Accept a boguspromotion and you could find yourself trapped in a job more miserablethan the entry-level gig you rode in on.

Not every step up is a step in the right direction. Accept a bogus promotion and you could find yourself trapped in a job more miserable than the entry-level gig you rode in on.



"A lot of people are getting promoted in this economy because companies are trying to do more with less," executive coach Cynthia Shapiro says. "Instead of bringing somebody in, they're having employees do three or four jobs by promoting them and then expecting them to still do their old work.”



"It's kind of a recipe for disaster," she adds.



But it's not a recipe you need to swallow.



"You never have to take something that's being offered to you," executive coach Meredith Haberfeld says -- and sometimes you shouldn't.



"You need to get clear about what you want out of your career long-term, then you need to make strategic moves towards that," she adds.



Don't Get Stuck With A Lofty Title



It's paradoxical: Getting fired, people who’ve gone through that often say, can be the best thing that ever happens to you. But a promotion? A wrong move up can feel more like a chute than a ladder.



"It's often easier to get a promotion than it is to move back if you don't like it," Shapiro warns. "People don't let you. Companies like to see forward motion. You tell the company you want to go back down, they won't allow it. You try to go to another company and get the position you had before--but you've got this loftier title.



"They're going to imagine something is wrong," she adds.



Any new job title, Shapiro says, is going to be a leap. Think before you jump.



"I would recommend people take 50 to 100 dollars and talk to an expert before you move," she says.



"These things sometimes aren't as good as they look," she adds. "Look at it objectively and make sure the position is set up for success."



Even if it is, it may not be for you, Haberfeld stresses.



"Make sure expanded leadership and accountability is something you are interested in," she says. "That said, don't be short-sighted."

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