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I was wondering how long I should wait after having asked for a promotion to know an answer one way or the other. I asked to be promoted about a month ago and nothing seems to be forthcoming. Is this enough of a period to wait? Also, should I take the initiative and ask my boss about it, or should I just wait? Any insight would be great.

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Do you have regular 1 to 1's / monthly catch up meetings with them? If so, that would be a good time to raise the issue (albeit gently) - would your boss be the person to even ask, or would it be someone from HR (again this is something you could ask if you have regular meetings).

I think this soon after Christmas might be too early to expect an answer (as some larger organisations can take multiple months to get a decision approved), but if you were to speak to your boss to see if there is anything you can do to help with the process (being helpful rather than simply asking for an answer can work wonders!) this can be a good way to provide a gentle nudge to get things moving

  • +1 for “speak to your boss to see if there is anything you can do to help with the process”. – J. C. Salomon Jan 5 '13 at 23:07
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In general, I would say a month is about the right amount if time to wait. There shouldn't be any harm in a gentle reminder to him/her.
The only thing I would consider is that this time of year can be hectic and distracting. Your request may have been pushed down the to-do list in the lead up to Christmas. Particularly if you have had year end tasks to complete. If this is the case, give it another week so your boss can get back up to date.

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    ... why is a month about the right amount of time? Why is there no harm in a gentle reminder? – enderland Jan 4 '13 at 14:57
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I believe this question require more details in order to answer accurately.

What is the out come of last meeting?
What did your boss say in the last meeting?
Are you eligible for promotion in first place?
What frequently promotion cycle occurs in your organization? Yearly or Half-yearly?

Now since we don't know answers to any of these questions, I assume there is no action plan was not defined in your last meeting with your boss and you are eligible for promotion. Now I believe set up a followup meeting with a boss and ask the following questions.

What is the process of getting promotion for an eligible employee?
Where your promotion request as per the process?
How much time it takes to finish that process and when you get promotion letter?

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