To Jump or To be Pushed?
There are times in our working lives when we are faced with a situation of where we are frustrated in the position that we are in and internally we are deciding if we should jump or wait to be pushed. There was a time that I was in such a scenario.
At first, all was well as I left a long-standing job for what appeared to be a significant career jump opportunity. During the interviews, all were great as there appeared to be a clear understanding of what the owners wanted and what I could bring to their company.
As always when starting a new position, the first month is all about the give and take of learning each other’s ways. By the end of the first month of working in the company, as I always do in a new position, I provided my presentation of the HR and Organisation diagnostic of the company plus my recommendations in moving the corporate services, organisational structure, and Senior Management procedures forward.
At this point, it was a very positive time, as through the discussion in this meeting all was good and agreed in terms of the steps that I had put forward. So, with a spring in my step and a plan in place it felt a good point to get going. This was the case until towards the end of the second month.
There was a turnaround of behavior from the owners as they became less communicative and approachable with the way of moving forward with issues. It turns out that they were not satisfied with certain progress in various requirements, as it turns out requirements that were not being expressed as being urgent. In the absence of senior team meetings, as I put forward, there was no alignment within the senior team of whom was doing what and therefore creating an environment of confusion and people repeating others work.
During the third month, it got to the point where it felt like I was failing at everything I touched in the company. At these times I took my normal position of working harder, as to me failure is a disguised opportunity to find a solution to something. But this time it was different, I felt I was putting all the correct things in place and for the first time I was finding myself looking outside the situation looking for an escape plan, for alternative ventures or positions.
On this occasion, the company moved first and pushed me, knowing ironically on the day they decided to this I was already had written my resignation letter.
In the end, it came down to two different approaches, of a company saying they want one thing but carrying on in the same ways that they were. Knowing it is part of my role to adapt and provide a plan for the future, it can only succeed if the top people are on board with such a plan. The problem was communication, instead of sharing their concerns they would just say yes to all the plans I came up with in the meetings, but when it came down the actions they were not committed to the plan, this, in the end, caused the tension. They were clearly confused between what they wanted and what they actually required.
For me, this was the first time being in a situation that was clearly not working. What I have learned from this experience is that not every work position or career progression you go for will work out, and that is okay as long as you can stick to your principles and commit to your way of working. When it comes to it, it is not good to be in an environment when you are surrounded in negativity. During this time my physical health, mental health, and my personal relationships suffered while I tried and tried to work through this situation.
My advice would be to look into yourself to understand if you have given the best of your abilities and if there is anything really that you can do that would improve that connection with the Employer. If not, then it is the time to jump, as to me it is better to make that decision from a place where you can walk away rather than being pushed. As when you are pushed you keep with that thought of ‘was there was something else I could have done?’ in the background of your mind.
Obviously, there are no clear rules for establishing when to jump, as everyone has their own situations and circumstances that govern this type of decision, with some of those being beyond our control. But if you can, and you are in a position where things are not well in your working environment then you deserve to find something better. As in the end, this is a key part of your life and affects you as any significant relationship does. It is always better to be in a positive relationship than a negative one.
In the end, we all have our limits on the negative situations we find ourselves in, however, we all need to realize that we have the power to plan and navigate our way out into better ones if only we commit to ourselves.
At deconstructing HR we offer career advice for those seeking their next direction, or work with companies in enhancing their career development pathways for their employees.