update from the reader who was getting great feedback but no new responsibilities

Remember the reader who was getting great feedback from her manager but was frustrated because she couldn’t convince him to allow her to take on any new responsibilities? Here’s her update.

About two weeks after my letter was posted, the head of my department and the next person below her left the company within a week (one to a new job, one on maternity leave). We knew about the maternity leaver, but only found out about the job leaver the day before.

The responsibility for their workload fell on my manager and another manager of his level. While we all tried to figure out how to do things for the next year (I’m in the UK, so maternity leave = 12 months), I picked up a lot of his work, especially in the first few weeks.

The past four months have been really frantic, but they’ve also been amazing. I think my manager was concerned about my moving too far too fast, but now that I’ve had to take on a lot of  ‘advanced’ work by necessity, he’s not worried anymore that I’ll trip up or need hand-holding. He’s been very busy and I’ve been working hard to ensure that when he delegates part of his workload to me, it gets done on time and correctly. (I aim for ahead of time and above target, but of course that doesn’t always happen!) It’s been working, and I’ve been receiving more and more higher-level assignments, including interviewing job applicants for the first time and training new starters (yay!), and learning a lot about how to manage processes and people.

I don’t know what will happen once our colleague comes back from maternity leave, but I feel I’m definitely getting the experience and trust I was unsure how to acquire when I originally wrote in. Of course I’m hoping for a promotion (which would really just be recognising what I’m now already doing, and doing well) at my next annual review, but whatever happens, then I’m very happy with my trajectory now.

{ 5 comments… read them below }

  1. Sonata*

    It’s wonderful that you took up the gauntlet and worked so hard. Your can-do determination will be a great asset to your career. Best wishes – and thanks for sharing your update!

  2. Kim*

    Wow, I wish I had coworkers like you. You just seem like you’re a hard worker and are more interested in acquiring skills than titles. Your manager definitely has a keeper!

    1. OP*

      Acquiring skills here means I’ll be that much closer to taking over the world at my next job! :)

  3. Jen M.*

    This is amazing news! I hope things are still going well, as I’m about a month and a half late to the party!


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