I just started a new job that might be the wrong job. My new employer lured me away from a very good job at a very good company, and moved me to a new city. I have been at the new job for one month and am beginning to see a not-so-pretty picture of what my job actually entails, compared to what was originally sold to me during the interviewing process.
I have a strong feeling that things will not improve. I want it to work out, and I have spoken to my supervisor, but I honestly do not think anything will change. What is the best route to take here? Should I speak with the recruiter who sold me on the job? (This is a full-time position, not a contract.) What did I do wrong? Thanks!
You’re on board now. Given that you relocated, there’s no easy way to turn back, unless you want to move back to your old company, and they’re willing to have you. That’s doubtful. Let’s discuss what to do now, then we’ll explore why this may have happened and how to avoid a repeat!
Did recruiter deliver the wrong job?
You should indeed speak to the recruiter, who might be able to serve as your advocate with the employer. I’d do this right now—the sooner, the better.
In most cases, the recruiter’s fee is contingent on you staying at the job for some period of time (90 days is common). So, the recruiter will have more than a passing interest in helping you work this out.
But let’s hope the recruiter didn’t deliver a wrong job.
Can you and your boss “right” a wrong job?
You should also continue to work with your manager to turn things around. It may take time, and you need to be very positive in the way you present this on an ongoing basis. You need to convey your interest in doing your work in the way that will be best for the company, and that “the way” is what you agreed to from the beginning. Don’t start with recriminations—that won’t help at this point. Approach it as a partner, because that’s what you are. Try to set the wrong job right.
This might mean your boss alters your job now, or agrees to change your work in the near future.
How to avoid taking a wrong job
The traditional recruiting and hiring process too often neglects the very issues that may have put you in the spot you’re in.
In the end, if the only real solution is to move on, you’ll know it. Remember that the purpose of a job search is not to “get a job”. The purpose is to win the right job. The best way to avoid situations like this is to address these questions before accepting a job:
- Has the work been clearly defined? Do you truly understand it? By the time HR gets done chewing up a job description and spitting out the job posting that lured you, you may be interviewing for a job even the hiring manager doesn’t recognize. So, discuss the wording of the job posting with the boss. This is best done in the interview, but it’s very important to review it together now.
- Can you do the work they want done? The only way to determine this for sure is to demonstrate your abilities in the interview, so they can see how you will approach the work. This also gives you the all-important opportunity to see what they really mean by “the work.” This may be why you’ve been taken by surprise — and why you’re in the wrong job.
- Can you do the work the way they want it done? Clearly, there’s a disconnect here, and you and they are not “matching.” Again, this needs to be covered during the due diligence phase of the interview process. It’s as much your responsibility as the employer’s.
- Can you do the work profitably, for you and for the employer? I doubt this ever got discussed, and it has likely contributed to the misunderstanding. If you had raised this issue and discovered what really matters to the employer, you may not have taken this job.
When these questions are not clearly and honestly addressed in the recruiting, interview and hiring process, people can land in the wrong job and wind up job hunting again very soon.
I hope you can work this out. Don’t assume yet that you took the wrong job. First, make sure you are doing a good job, then find out where this job leads. If you really took the wrong job, the sooner you move on, the better. (I won’t get into this here, but if you need to move on, please see Parting Company: How to leave your job.)
Never take a job unless you’ve addressed the questions above. Never hire anyone unless these questions have been addressed.
Have you ever taken a wrong job? What led up to the mistake? Were you at fault or was the employer? Should this reader even try to work it out with the boss, or just quit? What other methods should the reader try to get this resolved?