How keeping a diary can help you land a pay rise and a promotion

Fed up of not getting the pay rise or promotion you deserve? If only you could get noticed for all your hard work and achievements, you’d positively race up that corporate ladder. And now with remote and hybrid working being the norm, it’s even harder to feature on your boss’s radar let alone to shine.


Dear reader, we have some fantastic news for you! According to Kevin O’Leary – the phenomenally successful Canadian businessman, entrepreneur and television personality – you can change your fortunes by adopting just one new workplace habit. For full disclosure on the transforming power of journalling, please see O’Leary’s video clip on the subject, as published by CNBC. Otherwise, scan our summary below. You’ve got this!


If your boss looks good, so do you! So, however you feel about your boss, do whatever it takes to ensure that the tasks he or she gives you are completed successfully. Your boss and those around him/her will notice. And getting noticed is half the battle with promotions and pay rises.


When your boss gives you a new task, make the desired outcome measurable. If you can quantify the results, it’s easy to judge success and give your work the stamp of ‘executional excellence’. Instructions including terms like ‘more sales,’ or ‘speed up delivery’ won’t cut it. Insist on specifics. How many days are you aiming for with the delivery of your next project? What revenue should you be aiming to generate? Should you focus on new client wins or greater value per deal?


Record your achievements so it’s easy to refer back to them when you come to put together your case for a promotion. Include the nature of the task, the date you were given it and the date you completed it. All the better if you achieved your goal ahead of schedule.


If you’re working remotely for even just part of the week, it’s easy for your boss and others to be unaware of all your work triumphs. By keeping a journal of your successes, you have a convincing, powerful mine of information to hand when your next appraisal comes around. Use it to demonstrate the value you have brought to your team and your company over the last year. Presented with such proof of all your executional successes, it will be impossible for your boss not to be impressed. And that means that your request for a rise or a promotion is much more likely to be granted.


We suggest that you share those successes in both verbal and written format so that it’s easy for your boss (and you) to reshare this information with other decision stakeholders, including HR.


ABL your trusted recruitment partner wishes you the very best with your campaign for a promotion and a rise! If you don’t get the outcome you wish in this or other work matters, please get in touch. Thanks to our close working relationships with over 400+ leading companies worldwide, we have a complete and up-to-date view of the jobs market and can help you make an informed, smart decision about your next career move. Please give us a call on +44 (0)20 7092 3939 or email us at to learn more.