In 1969, the Canadian pedagogue Laurence J. Peter climbed to the top of the bestseller lists with Peter’s Principle, a play written in collaboration with the playwright and television screenwriter Raymond Hull in which he explained one of the keys to the malfunctioning of companies: the tendency to reward efficient employees with promotions, which sometimes had two unintended consequences: 1) who had been effective in his previous position did not work as well in his new category; and 2) the frustration and discontent that, as a consequence, that employee suffered in a position awarded as a prize.
Recent research confirms that neither promotion is the ideal reward for everyone, nor does everyone want to be promoted. A study done in 2014 in the United States by the recruitment company Careerbuilder indicated that 66 percent of respondents did not want a job promotion; his reasons were to conclude that the increase in work and responsibilities did not compensate for the increase in the salary of the position, not to be considered ready to go up, but the main reason given – by 52 percent – was that “they were happy with their current work”.
Reasons for immobility
“The promotion requires new skills that you have to teach and not everyone is willing to learn,” says Isabel Aranda, a psychologist and expert in executive coaching, a technique that helps improve the work capacity of those who follow it.
Faced with the traditional concept of almost obligatory promotion – traditionally, in almost no company it is understood that someone does not want to go up, and rejecting a promotion can be problematic -, the idea is gradually imposed that perhaps the worker prefers other compensations. As Aranda says, “it’s about the employees being able to make decisions about their trajectory; it’s not so much ‘you’ve had to go to marketing’, but rather, do you feel like going to marketing? ”