Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Job and Career Questions?

Please post your job and career questions and comments. I want to hear from you!

What's happening at your place of work? ... Who is helping you? ... What are your thoughts about getting your next promotion or raise?

Come on and give us your ideas.

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Anonymous said...

Hi Patty,

Thanks for opening this forum for job and career questions. I have a question for you.

When I started my job, I was a beginner and required a lot of 'hand holding' from my supervisors as I learned the ropes.

Over four years, I have gained a lot of experience and confidence along the way.

The problem is that I am still treated and looked upon as a 'beginner'. I'm finding it is hard to break out of that mold.

Do you have any recommendations for how to assert oneself and gain more respect in the workplace? It's very important to me that people start to to think of me in the big leagues!

Thank you.

Patty De said...

Dear "Former-Beginner"

It's easy for former bosses or those who are older or with more seniority to think of you still as the "newbee"... it even happens to people on the job for 20 years sometimes.
Here are couple of ideas:
without being too braggy, talk up some of your recent accomplishments when you can. Let people know that you are more than you came in with by sharing some of your more recent kudos, outside certifications or awards if you have some.
Ask about others, work on the good old boys network...whether you are a guy or lady, there is an informal network and you can be part of it for the good, your own good.
I heard that Barak Obama could not even get a floor pass to the 2000 Democratic convention but for the next few years he really worked on his personal network and internal politics and was then asked to give a key note speech at the 2004 convention. That got him noticed by a lot more of the power players on his "team" so to speak and they no longer thought of him as the too young kid.

You may have to leave the current job you are in and start in the middle or as a senior manager in a new employers to lose your beginner status at work. If you do leave, choose the next post carefully and go in as a pro..... it will help how people see you as you enter the next promotion.
If practical issue reports on accomplishments or the first 100 days when in a new position.

Don't worry too much about being thought of as too young, unfortunately time will take care of that "problem" for you soon enough!
Please let us hear from others who have shed their "mentee status" to become mentors!

Patty De

Jon D. said...


I'm nervous about the cost-cutting mentality sweeping through corporate America; plus all the dooms day scenarios that are creating such a panic!

What advice do you have for staying CALM during this rocky time, when little seems certain. I'm sure you've seen your fair share of ups and downs...


Anonymous said...

Hi Patty,

I'm writing to ask for advice with a little "he-said, she-said" office problem.

I work with a colleague with whom I have much in common - both on a personal level and professional - we also share a lot of friends in common (at work and outside).

The problem is this person can be very difficult. She is extremely loyal and helpful to her friends, and extremely the opposite to those she doesn't like.

She is also my senior in my workplace. (i.e. She is not my direct supervisor, but is in some ways a superior.)

My problem is that she and I don't get along. Two years ago I took over her job and she made my transition very difficult. She felt that I could never do the job as well as her, and frequently questioned my decisions and ability to do my (her) work. She left her office in complete disarray and it took me weeks, if not months, to clean it all up and get the files and paperworks in order.

Ever since that difficult experience 2 years ago (when we butted heads), I feel very awkward in her presence. But at the same time I feel pressure to please her and be her friend, for professional reasons and also for the friends we have in common. It feels belittling to have to be so accomodating but at the same time I don't want to generate any more bad blood.

Do you have any insights or advice for this situation? Have you experienced or witnessed something similar?

Anonymous said...

Former Beginner is now proud to say that I have recently received a promotion. I will be able to head up an overseas project early in 2009! Your advice and my patience and persistence is paying off. Thank you!