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Agency Career Timeline Part 3: Getting your first agency promotion

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As we mentioned in the last instalment of our Agency Career Timeline series, agency employees have the opportunity to explore different areas and change roles over the course of their career. With nothing static in a modern creative agency, it’s natural for entry-level talent to start thinking about how they’re going to take their career to the next level.

While landing a promotion in an agency certainly isn’t easy, transitioning from a junior role into a senior or management position can be achieved if you prove to the decision-makers that you have the right skills, qualities and attitude to handle the additional responsibility. Here are our top tips on how you can make sure you get that all-important agency promotion:

Show dedication

No, this doesn’t necessarily mean working until 8pm every night. Showing that you’re dedicated can be as simple as volunteering to help a team prep for a big meeting, making colleagues working to a tight deadline a much-needed drink or attending events that might be helpful to the agency in terms of knowledge transfer and business development. This might mean you have to swallow your pride and do some pretty crappy jobs from time-to-time. Whether that’s ordering and collecting lunch for a meeting, taking parcels to the Post Office or even picking up the boss’ dry cleaning, do it with a smile and no complaints and you’ll stand out for all of the right reasons.


When on a mission to get promoted people often make the mistake of ring-fencing their work to prove to superiors they’ve got it covered. However, managers often want you to demonstrate delegation and the ability to utilise the skills of the rest of the team, particularly if you’re hoping to transition from executive to manager. It’s also vital you keep the team updated about what you’re working on and how it’s going. Although tempting to present the finished article to try and impress everyone, it’s better to keep them in the loop or they might start questioning your output.

Speak up

Agency team meetings can be daunting; everyone’s busy and would rather be back at their desks than in a huddle. However, that’s not a reason to sit back and keep quiet. Team meetings provide the perfect opportunity to share your thoughts and feedback as well as offer your assistance to those who might need it. If you’ve spotted an event that might be useful for someone to attend, mention it. If you’ve read an interesting piece of news that might affect a client, share it. No one will think any less of you, and piping up will go a long way in demonstrating your curiosity and confidence.

Own your mistakes

We’re all human and will inevitably make mistakes and forget things on occasion. Sitting back and hoping no one notices or struggling to rectify an issue by yourself can make matters worse and, in some cases, affect the confidence the team and the clients have in you. If you’ve made a mistake, own it. Make sure you tell someone and ask for their help, or offer a solution you think might fix it.

To sum up, you need to get yourself noticed for all of the right reasons by your superiors in order to bag your first agency promotion. Be willing, self-aware, curious, proactive and bold, and you’ll make a significant impact in your agency from day one. If you’re ready for a fresh agency challenge, get in touch with the team at Henry Nicholas to find out more about the latest exciting roles on offer.​