What message is your CD sending when you were expecting a promo, but received a small salary bump instead?

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"We can't afford to pay you the salary that comes with a new title so take this"

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That you’re not ready for the role but the appreciate you and want you to keep doing well. Promotions aren’t pats on the back. They’re responsibility.

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Have the conversation with your CD, there could be a myriad of reasons that came into play and it’ll give you some closure on the reality of the situation. On my end for instance, I found out I wasn’t able to bump up the salary of one of my designers since merit increases this year at my company could only be attributed to promotions, a result of the impact Covid had on our business. If you were rewarded with a merit increase and others weren’t, that does signify you are valued though at the very least.

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Major disclaimer that I feel extremely lucky to have received anything at all, but a promo is what was promised for this cycle. I’m trying to figure out if this means I should leave.

During Covid? "We broke, so we can only give you the bare minimum." Seriously though, if you just got that, your boss should immediately set expectations of when you're getting that promo. Sometimes there's red tape behind the scenes that you may not be aware of so if he hasn't brought it up yet and it was initially promised to you then you should bring it up. His answer will let you know where you stand. Then you can figure out next moves.

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