Earlier this year I joined a consulting firm that works with companies in my previous industry. I had taken a break to get a management degree and got a taste of consulting doing an internship that was part of my program.
I believed consulting would be a different world where I would learn a lot—but now, seven months in, I recognize that I learned a lot more five years ago when I started my career as an entry level employee.
My workload isn’t interesting or challenging. My peers are all younger than me, and all they do is complain about their jobs and bad mouth others. And when I told my supervisor how I feel about my job during my midyear review, she didn’t seem to care.
I’ve always had opportunities in the past to work with people my own age or older—people I could learn from who knew more than I did. I’m worried that I’m stuck in the wrong job and that it will negate the five years’ experience I had when I came here.
Dear Feeling Stuck,
Everyone is motivated to work for various reasons—the need to pay the bills is usually number one. But it is clear that you deeply value a safe and collegial working environment. A learning environment, challenging work, and adding value also seem to be very important to you.
It sounds like you are not going to get any of those where you are now. But you are only “stuck” if you are being held hostage. It doesn’t sound like that’s the case, so … go! Go as soon as you can. You haven’t let so much time go by that you have lost the value of your previous stint. In fact, you might think about going back to your old company, perhaps this time in a management position.
Honor your own experience and instincts. Find yourself a job where you can excel and a working environment that brings out the best in people.
About the author
Madeleine Homan Blanchard is a master certified coach, author, speaker, and cofounder of Blanchard Coaching Services. Madeleine’s Advice for the Well Intentioned Manager is a regular Saturday feature for a very select group: well intentioned managers. Leadership is hard—and the more you care, the harder it gets. Join us here each week for insight, resources, and conversation.
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