Thursday, April 23, 2009

Change is hard!

There have been A LOT of changes at my job in the last two weeks. Yesterday, I was pretty sure that we were being shut down and laid off en masse, which didn't end up happening, but it's going to end up with two new high-up bosses and a new not-boss but someone who I will do a lot of work for. My direct boss seems very stressed--I know she's pretty close to retirement and I think she might leave soon, which leaves me wondering what to do next.

If I stay where I am now, I will be doing a lot more work. I have a legitimate case to ask for a raise, I think. And I know that they just axed twenty people, and I'll be taking on some of the responsibilities of three of them. It looks like I'll be doing direct-report work for another person, possibly two.

I do think I should ask for a raise. I'm not sure how much, and I'm not sure how I'll do it (and I don't even know who would approve it anymore, since all the high-ups are going to be new and not know me). I think I should go through with it though.

On the other hand, I could also use this opportunity to sort of jump ship a little, leave my direct boss and move to another division with someone I've worked indirectly for before. I'm really interested in that area, but I really like working for my direct boss right now, and had sort of promised myself I was going to leave these kinds of considerations off the table until I'm finished with graduate school just so I don't have to deal with it all.

And then Peanut and I are talking about longer in the future and moving someplace totally different, where I would have to start all over from scratch anyway.

I'm very confused and stressed about this. I don't know whether to look, leap, or just ask for more money and be happy that I've got a job. What would you do? Have any of you asked for a raise successfully (or unsuccessfully)? What were the circumstances?


  1. If there are layoffs and such, I would be surprised it they were responsive on asking for a raise. Unfortunately, when times are tough, which usually indicates that there are a lot of people looking for work, employers hold more of the cards.

  2. With new bosses who don't have your track record in mind AND layoffs, it might be hard to get them to match your value in the form of a raise. It seems to make sense that they're cutting people to save money, so they wouldn't be amenable, but it also makes sense that they should be able to pay you more for doing more. But I'm less aggressive than I should be, at times, with this sort of thing.

    Could you explore the possibility of the lateral move a little more? See if there's a reasonable workload on that side? That might be worthwhile for the same or a smidge more money rather than taking on 2 more workloads for no extra money.

  3. Yeah, it's bizarre. The closing of the other imprint was termed layoffs, but it wasn't really--it was performance and relocation-related. I know we're all about saving money here lately (turning off lights and printing double-sided even) but jeez--20 people aren't here anymore, they couldn't throw a few bucks my way since I'm now doing those people's jobs?

    I am going to explore the lateral move a little more. I just confirmed that his assistant is NOT going with him, so there might be some possibilities. However, I love, love, love my current boss and I don't want to leave her until she leaves me. And I could learn a lot from this new person. Gah!

  4. Oh that's a different story then. I thought (assumed, really, based on the slip'n'slide of the industry) that it was primarily a cost-cutting measure with a side of losing the deadwood.

    Could you talk to your boss? Since you love her so, perhaps she would be willing to share her plans and even coordinate with you so you can stay with her as long as possible, and then move to the next position?

    [Idealistic, I know, but once you bring "could learn a lot from this new person" into the picture, I say it's worth a try.]


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