A Costco manager who has been with the company for over 20 years shares his No. 1 tip for getting promoted

 Costco stands out in retail for fostering long-term careers, with many employees rising from entry-level positions. A prime example is CEO Ron Vachris, who started as a forklift driver 40 years ago.

To understand career advancement at Costco, Business Insider interviewed a manager who began in the food court over 20 years ago. This manager, who remains anonymous due to company policy, shared insights on climbing the corporate ladder.

His key advice: "For faster promotion and growth, relocate to expanding areas." He specifically mentioned Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Arkansas, where Costco has a limited presence (only eight locations across these states) and struggles to find willing transferees.

The manager cited a colleague who joined Costco four years ago and moved to Oklahoma after just one year. "She's already an assistant warehouse manager," he noted, attributing her rapid rise to both qualifications and willingness to relocate to less desirable areas.

Costco typically adds about 24 new U.S. locations annually, recently focusing on placing new stores closer together to ease pressure on busier warehouses. The company strongly favors internal promotions, especially for leadership roles in new locations.

"It's extremely rare for Costco to hire supervisors or managers externally," the manager stated, emphasizing the company's preference for experienced insiders to ensure smooth operations at new warehouses.

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