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I took a job after a relocation that I quickly discovered I’m overqualified for (bottom-rung outside sales- I have almost a decade of 1-1 experience). In fact, I’m younger (34/F) than my boss but more experienced than her (47/F) – though I do help her quite a bit and know that she will be wonderfully competent with a little more time and training. I can read the room – I’m cautious about minding my place on the team. She has also not managed people before, and there are three of us.

I began this job in November (terrible timing) and by March quickly realized this role wasn’t a good fit (for the record, she began in July). And then everything happened **motions to world on fire**.

I generally get along with her, we collaborate well, but I think I ruffled her (and her boss’s) feathers when I escalated my insistence on receiving KPIs (my territory is too big to not have them). I begged for them for months and desperately needed parameters to work within – this potentially made my bosses feel like I made them look bad? I’m not sure.

Because I’m a Capricorn, I put myself on anxiety medication, rolled up my sleeves and started some projects that should prime me for some good moves in our fluid environment. Today was not the first time she’s expressed this sentiment to me, but we were having a good conversation about how I feel underutilized and where I could see myself going, how I can pave my own path forward, and she alluded to – several times- that maybe my path isn’t HERE. Maybe I can actualize my future NOT HERE. It doesn’t have to be HERE.

I don’t know what this is. Misguided advice? Being threatened? I kept insisting that the role isn’t a good fit but the company is and I’d be willing to bide my time while developing my skill set. I also said I would like to grow my future right where I am – and that the job market will be in an unstable place for quite a while – and I could practically hear her shrugging over the phone as she said, “one of my girl friends just started a new job last week!” Does she want me out tomorrow?

She has not been a good people manager at all, but everyone has to start somewhere. And I like her as a human. What do I do with this? I’m not close with my peers that also roll up to her (we are all remote anyway). I’m hesitant to say anything to HR. I’m very insulated from our lean management structure. It’s absolutely put a damper on feeling like I should be here.

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TL;DR Overqualified for new role at new company. My boss (also new) hints at growing my career elsewhere. Unsure if she’s threatened by my experience level? Not sure what to do with this being brought up several times. Should I share my feelings about when she says these things? Let it go, feel my morale sink and try to find another job in this climate? Is what she said deeply unprofessional or just misguided?

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