When Working Hard Works Against You


A little sun and sand always helps in the reflection process.

All this time out enjoying the beauty of nature recently has given me an opportunity to reflect on the things going on at work. I seem to be stuck in an interesting paradigm within my workforce. To prove that I am worthy of a long term contract or a full time position I need to demonstrate each day that I’m a self-motivated, proactive young manager that follows through with tasks. However, I’ve just learned that my proactive approach to managing the future of my own career has upset the powers that be.

Within my company there is a position in which their sole purpose is to allocate the right managers for the right jobs in our department. They see us as a resource and essentially their job is to manage the resources as they see fit so that company demands are met. Just last week I learned that my proactive approach to networking myself, in hopes of finding a team that will want me to join them in a more permanent capacity, has upset these resourceful individuals who’s job it is to do this for me. It was never my intent, but I’ve always be told it was hard work that would get me anywhere and so I was working hard to make that happen.

I’ve now been instructed to correct my mistake by admitting what I did was wrong and that I now recognize the err of my ways. In addition, it was brought to light that I should let the team know that from this point on I will leave the future of my career solely in their hands. Now, had I not been told that I was passed up for three temporary contracts because I was being presented as “unavailable” while I’ve been sitting at home in search of work, I might have just agreed that I could leave the future of my career in another person’s hands.

This raises the question, should we be willing to let our companies decide the fate of our careers while idly sitting by? Is relinquishing control of our work lives the right thing to do? I have pros and cons for both sides of the argument, so I’ll now turn it over to you all. How do you feel about this shift in the workforce? Is this something you see within your company as well?

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2 Comments to "When Working Hard Works Against You"

  1. Lori's Gravatar Lori
    July 29, 2013 - 1:27 PM | Permalink

    A similar thing happened to me, and I ultimately chose to leave the company. They wanted me where they wanted me regardless of how qualified or better suited I was for another position. I can say that I made the right decision for myself as leaving forced me to focus on what I really wanted to do. Also, I still have a great relationship with the company. I recently visited and they asked if I would come back… but this time, for the position I actually wanted. Now is not the time, but who knows what will happen in the future?

    I think it is important to go for what we want. However, in your case it ironically turned against your favor. It is a tough question to answer with companies doing what they want and diminishing the efforts and motivation given by employees. Personally, I don’t work well for long in situations like that, but sometimes we have to press through those tough situations until we get where we want to be. However, some employees don’t have the patience to do that, and the companies put themselves in risk of losing highly motivated and qualified employees.

What do you have to say about all of this?

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