Not loving your role? Here’s 5 steps to course-correct your career
We ran a poll on LinkedIn asking: “What do you do if you aren’t loving your role?”
Here were the results:
While 29% of people are willing to have an open conversation with their manager, that’s still an alarming 50% of team members ready to jump ship bypassing an honest conversation.
Then we have the 13% who mentally ‘check out’, losing the motivation and drive to work hard.
Finally, there is the 8% seeking input from people around them, which although can be helpful to a point, we can expect there could be some resentment building which could leak out to the rest of your team.
So before you automatically fall into the basket of either avoiding a conversation or losing motivation to do your job altogether, these are our recommendations on how to embrace radical candour, get real about what you want in your career and get the best outcome for your career:
Identify what’s not working in your role.
The first step is asking yourself: are running away or running towards something? In other words, are you just trying to avoid a somewhat difficult conversation or are you actually moving towards a new role or opportunity you are genuinely excited about?
The second step is a deep reflection on your current situation. Is it something personal to you, something about your job description that you aren’t enjoying, or someone else impacting your situation that is making you feel this way? It’s important to understand whether your frustrations are something within your circle of control because if they are, then it’s time to act.
Be the architect of your own life.
Consider what you enjoy and how you would structure your ideal day. Beyond your role and job description, consider your extracurricular activities outside of work and the broader goals you have in life. Then brainstorm how you might work towards that ideal situation and the things that would need to change. The point of this is to make sure you aren’t using your job as a scapegoat for frustrations outside of work and within the bigger picture of your life.
If you can articulate how your role is helping you reach your life (and career) goals, you’re more likely to enjoy your role. If it is not helping you achieve either, then you need to consider what you need to change/add/remove in your situation in order to be more fulfilled.
Venting up, not out.
Talking to your peers is healthy up to a point – that’s the value of mentors and industry friends who likely have context of your role and can share their thoughts. But the truth is, no one knows you and your role like you do. There is always likely to be some bias in conversations with those people.
For that reason, it is at that ticking point when you want to take a collaborative approach and talk to a manager who can actually help you reach the outcome you want.
Have an honest conversation.
If your issue is with your role, be open about your goals and start asking your manager important questions. For example, are there parts of your role that are craftable? Do you want to take on more responsibility or professional development? Is working from home on the table?
If there’s a particular outcome you have in mind that would get you closer to your goals, then make your case. If your manager isn’t aware of your goals, there is nothing they can do about it (and hopefully they can). Don’t forget to communicate how this outcome will benefit the business and how you propose to implement those changes.
If you’ve given it some time, have considered your options, talked to your manager, and have resolved that you’re ready to move on then it’s time to get ready for your next chapter. Having done the steps above will ensure you can make your next decision with confidence and clarity.
If this is you, we recommend reading our recruiter’s guide on how to resign with ease and avoid burning bridges here and of course, come and speak to the team at Hunt & Co. about securing that next role that sparks joy!