Do you supervise a person asking for a promotion or a raise, or someone who is asking you about an open position? What do you do if you don’t think they are ready to take on the responsibilities of the position they are seeking?

Here are some ideas:

Go through their current job description with them. Show them the areas you believe are deficient, and together create a plan to correct those deficiencies. (Without the employee’s buy-in, there’s little chance of improvement.)

Perhaps you’ll decide together on higher efficiency in data entry, or more prospect calls per month, or maybe even something to do with soft skills or emotional intelligence competencies. There may even be online courses you can recommend to shore up the deficiencies you’ve identified.

As the person’s supervisor, it’s your responsibility to provide accurate feedback. If you honestly believe s/he is not ready to move up, it’s your job to say so, and to say so in a way that realistically supports that person’s career development.

We all need room to grow and the ability to stretch out of our comfort zones, but advancement we’re not even closely ready for can be a recipe for chaos and disappointment.