It’s not you, it’s me!
In your career you will have many periods of dissatisfaction. You might put it down to the work environment, the tasks that you are doing, your managers, your manager’s manager or a colleague. But sometimes, just sometimes, there comes a point in all of our careers where we just need to sit down and say, it’s not you – it’s me.
We have talked over a number of different posts about the difficult job a recruiter has. Not only are they trying to identify an individual that is capable of completing all of the tasks required in a role, but they are also trying to find this individual that will also fit into the established work environment. The latter being their greatest challenge.
We all have experience in failed work placements. Where the recruiter or HR Manager has chosen an ideal candidate, however their character and persona may not have been the right fit to the environment. But what happens if you are this character? Personally, I have witnessed and been involved across many of these situations, and sometimes, we just have to accept that maybe a mistake has been made. What if you were that individual though? This is where the statement “the grass is always greener on the other side” can have a funny spin! I actually stated to a client only this week that maybe, in his or her own personal situation, that the grass wasn’t that green, it really was on fire!
When we are looking for new positions, or organisations are looking to place us in positions, all of the positives are being sold. The organisation has a great team environment, everyone is really supportive, the role is extremely fulfilling and the organisation is extremely supportive of its team members. Any concerns are quickly dismissed with a “no” that isn’t the case at all, normally with demonstrated examples to quieten any alarm bells that might be ringing. This might be the case, but sometimes, the work environment may still not be right for us.
The workplace is, and always will be, volatile and dynamic. One of my client’s accepted recently what they perceived, and were sold, as an ideal career move, really wasn’t. It was meant to be the next step leading into a very senior position; one they had planned for their entire career. The problem was, 3 months into the placement, the organisation had a restructure resulting in their position changing. This has required the client to reassess where they are at, and ultimately if this organisation still will provide pathways to their career goals. A difficult question, but one that they had to ask. If you find yourself in a similar situation, there are a number of questions that you need to work through.
- Is the role still able to provide me with the opportunity I desire? If not, does the organisation have the structure to support you internally to achieve this elsewhere? Asking this question will allow you to determine how this position will assist you in achieving your goals within your current working environment.
- Am I the right fit for the culture? This is a difficult question to ask as in many situations, we have to accept that maybe the feelings that we are having are a result of our own character not being the right fit for the team. If you answer this question honestly, and identify that it may be you that is not fitting well within the team, is there an area for development here? Can you engage support from your manager to determine how to develop to allow you to fit more effectively within the team or organisation culture? If not, do you feel staying with the organisation will be beneficial or should outside options be considered?
- Was this position not right for me? Any career move is a challenge, especially when you can never determine all of the aspects of the role throughout the interview process. When asking this question you may be able to determine that this position was just not the right fit for your skillset – it may be too challenging or in many instances, just not challenging enough.
When being placed by a recruiter, it is important to discuss with them any concerns or issues that you may be having during your first 6 months. In a lot of situations, they will be able to provide support and guidance on how to move through some of these, or work with the organisation if required. Accepting that it may be you, and not the position or the organisation, as the reason for dissatisfaction is the first step to determining what it is that you really want, and need, to become the professional that you want to be. Remember, it is your career not anyone else’s to determine.