What A Manager Should Do When They Are In The Wrong Job

Change can result in you finding yourself in the wrong job
Change can result in you finding yourself in the wrong job
Image Credit: Christi Nielsen

As managers we are always looking for the next great job. No matter if it is with the firm that we are currently working for or if it requires us to switch firms, finding a better job, perhaps with more pay or a better title, is something that we are using our manager skills to look for. However, once we get that next job, the reality may not live up to what our expectations were. When we find ourselves in a situation like this, what should we do?

When The New Job Just Doesn’t Fit Right

It’s a persistent problem for job-hopping managers, aggravated by today’s hot job market. What can happen is that companies sometimes woo managers with pledges of powerful management assignments that don’t match reality. None of us have any manager training on how to avoid situations like this. What you may find out is that the person that you are now working for exaggerated a job’s importance or didn’t disclosing its challenges. When you find yourself in a situation like this you’ll have a decision to make. Should you adapt or run away? As with all such things in life, it all depends.

Finding yourself in a situation that is not what you were promised happens more often nowadays because business is changing so fast. What managers need to realize is that choosing to stay in a job without adjusting to the new reality is an almost surefire way to ensure you’re among the 40% of managers who fail in their first 18 months in a new role. Managers disappointed by a previous job have often failed to probe deeply about their new employer. Their expectations get dashed in a number of ways, including their scope of authority, staffing levels, the business’s financial health or even something as small as the size of their office.

What can managers do to avoid mismatched expectations? One thing that we can do is to request a detailed job description specific to the role at the time. Another thing that we can do is to sure that our offer letter spells out crucial details, including who our new supervisor will be. We need to realize that advanced planning isn’t always enough. A new job that we have accepted can fail to meet expectations when an employer’s true financial state doesn’t become clear until you get in the door.

What All Of This Means For You

Managers understand that they are the ones who are responsible for managing their careers. We are often looking for the next job that will allow us to move our careers along. When we accept a new position, we have hopes and dreams as to what we will be able to accomplish and experience in this new role. However, sometimes what we wanted is not what we get.

We can find ourselves in this situation if the company (or department) that was recruiting us promised things that they are not able to deliver. In this situation, you need to make some decisions about if you want to stay in the job or move on. If we choose to stay, we will need to adjust or we’ll risk that we may end up failing in this position. If we find ourselves in this kind of situation, we need to take action. Before we take the position, we need to ask for a detailed job description. Making sure that we receive an offer letter that details who our new supervisor will be and what we will be expected to do.

Accepting jobs that turn out to not be what we expected them to be is a real problem for managers. We will never be able to make sure that a new job always lives up to what our expectations are. However, if we keep our eyes open and ask the right questions before we accept a new position we can do a better job of making sure that our next job will meet our expectations.

– Dr. Jim Anderson Blue Elephant Consulting –
Your Source For Real World IT Management Skills™

Question For You: What questions can you ask to make sure that your next job will live up to your expectations?

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