According to the results of an online survey carried out by professional coaching network the Life Coach Directory, despite almost half of individuals (49%) feeling confident about their professional ability, only 41% have ever requested a pay rise or promotion in their current or a previous job.
Often, the biggest obstacle in the workplace is our own self-confidence and self-belief, so for those who are looking to progress in their role but find themselves standing in their own way, developing leadership skills with the help of management coaching could provide a much needed kick-start.
The annual pay review and the six monthly appraisal - many professionals are subjected to them year upon year, they know the drill, yet still their knees turn to jelly and their brains to mush when it comes to putting across a case for why they think they deserve that new job title, salary increase or a healthier looking benefits package.
So why is it that so many of us lack professional confidence?
Individuals who have found themselves walking out of their manager's office feeling elated over a pay rise or bonus but wondering why on earth they hadn't pushed for it sooner are not alone.
The results from the Life Coach Directory survey revealed that almost half of respondents (41%) had never asked for a promotion or a pay increase in either their current position or in a previous job role, and that 64% of respondents have never negotiated a starting salary. But for what reason?
Fear of looking greedy, concerns over giving the employer the wrong impression, and believing that what was advertised was all that was available were among some of the most common reasons cited for not negotiating a starting salary, whilst being too afraid to ask or unapproachable employers were among the reasons for those who didn’t feel comfortable asking for a promotion.
As well as the reasons mentioned above, it would seem that many professionals are also concerned about stepping on the toes of their colleagues – so much so that it can inhibit individuals from making the right decision for the business, or indeed for themselves.
When the respondents were asked if they valued personal relationships with colleagues over ambition, the audience appeared to be spilt almost half and half, with 44% valuing their friendships over their career and 44% believing that friendships should be left outside of the office door.
In addition, 43% only felt confident in their professional ability ‘sometimes’, whilst a worryingly high 38% admitted to feeling worried that recognising their own success and achievements in the workplace could appear as boastful and arrogant to other colleagues.
But is it not possible to strike a balance between all of these factors?
There is really nothing wrong with requiring some recognition for solid performance, creativity and passion if it is truly deserved. Nor is there anything wrong with making sound and informed business decisions even if not all colleagues are in agreement.
A career coach could help individuals to understand that it doesn’t have to be one extreme or the other – that it is possible to be ambitious, have confidence in ones own professional ability, strive to achieve the best and always put the business first whilst also wanting the best for others and not coming across as arrogant, cutthroat, unapproachable or as though stepping over colleagues to get ahead is an option.
There is a difference between ambition and competitiveness, and when this is understood individuals will be able to see that seeking advice from colleagues on career matters and sharing achievements and success stories could in fact enhance your working environment and productivity as both an individual and as a team.
A life coach specialising in career/business, personal development or confidence and self-belief will be able to offer assistance to individuals who feel that they are not reaching their full potential at work and feel that their efforts and contributions go unrecognised.
Popular personal development techniques used by life coaches and career coaches range from goal setting and logging personal achievements, through to identifying strengths and weaknesses and evaluating specific behaviours and decisions – all in a bid to help individuals discover what it is that is truly holding them back.
With an extensive library of fact-sheets - including information about management coaching, personal development and leadership skills – and a countrywide database of coaches, Life Coach Directory provides all of the information needed to help workplace wallflowers to overcome any hurdles in their way so that they can start climbing up that career ladder.
*All statistics based on a survey of 61 visitors to Life Coach Directory.
About Life Coach Directory
Life Coach Directory is a service that recognised the need for collating all of the information needed to help individuals find a suitable coach in their local area. Whilst other directories may supply contact details, Life Coach Directory goes that extra mile to provide all of the information that those seeking help may require to make the most informed decisions.
Life Coach Directory lists full profiles detailing each coach’s specialisms, the fees they charge, their practice location, qualifications and background information as to the kind of person they are. The directory also provides a wealth of information about life coaching areas and techniques so visitors can browse this information before choosing a coach.