It has happened to most of us. You were obviously the best pick for the promotion, yet, it went to someone else! OUCH! Hurt, Anger, Self-doubt all start showing up. You have to go in everyday and work for this person who stole your job! You start thinking… “Hey I can live for a while on savings.” “I’m going to quit and find people who appreciate me.”

Now, Pause, Take a Deep Breath and Reconsider

Maybe you do have the financial reserves that would allow you to live without a paycheck for a while but there are other considerations.  Do you want to be the kid who picks up his toys and goes home when the game doesn’t go his way? What will this rash behavior say to future employers? Is there something you can learn from this experience?

What should you do?

1st Take another Deep Breath. What I am suggesting is not easy. We work hard to plan our careers, build our skills and knowledge, work our way towards our goals. Acting rashly or sharing your outrage will not do you any good.

2nd Meet with one of your Mentors, discuss what has happened and air your disappointment with someone who can be a soundboard and not impact your current position.  Don’t have a Mentor? This is a good time to seek someone out who can help you re-group and be more successful next time.

3rd Meet with the people you interviewed with and ask them for input on your development. Do not demand why they chose the other person. You need to honestly seek their feedback or they will know you are just fishing for justification. Tread lightly with an open mind.

4th Offer your support to the person who got the job. You probably have an ability or quality that they don’t have. Let them know that you are a team player and what you can contribute. Keep an eye out for what you can learn from them and let them know you are looking forward to learning from them.

With a little time and a better understanding of why the job is not yours, you can now make a rational decision about next steps. Maybe your first thought was correct and you do need a change. Look around your current company first to see what interests you and also look outside the company.  You can now plan your transition strategy without the pressure of finding an income. If you leave, you leave with your relationships intact and some new insight.