Years ago I worked as a nurse manager for a very busy sub acute unit. I had that role for 4 years. A supervisor job opened up so I applied. I was very well qualified for the job. The DON told me point blank she wasn't going to give me the job because she 'couldn't afford to lose me as a sub acute manager' and she didn't think she'd be able to find a replacement as good as I was. I told her point blank that I had no intentions of spending the rest of my career as a unit manager so I would be looking elsewhere. Less than a week later, I was offered a better position elsewhere and left. The DON called me 4 times and begged me to come back. I went back, got the supervisor job, and a raise. I hadn't wanted to leave there because I lived 1.5 miles away, but sometimes you just have to make the leap. I was lucky. When I became a DON, I never refused to promote a qualified person just because it would leave a spot for me to fill.