Manager retiring and I want her job!(5 Posts)
A bit of background to start with... I work in a small county council workplace library (not public library, we work providing information services to a specific department). The management structure is a full time manager, 3 part time professional librarians and a part time administrator. I've been there 9 months and have so far taken over some of my managers duties and have had very good reviews. I get on well with other people in the department and people are getting to know my name which is good as quite a bit of the job is networking. My manager has told me that she is retiring next year and I really want to put myself in the best position possible to take over from her.
I need advice on how I can out myself in the best position to take over from her. I've registered for professional chartership and am working on my portfolio, and I'm starting a professional qualification related to the department I work for. There is workplace online learning for future managers and I've started working through the modules.
I'm torn as to whether I should mention my plans to my manager yet. We have a 1-1 next week and I don't know if I should say anything yet or wait. And what else should I be doing?
The last time I was in this sort of position for promotion I fell pregnant with my DS1 and have sort of been out of the picture for the last five years, so I'm really keen to get this right!
I think you've got to be a bit ballsy and talk it your manager about it. A) she's best qualified to tell you what skills you need to do her job; B) your employers need to know you're itching for the opportunity before they appoint someone else; C) knowing what council budgets are like, it's possible they won't be replacing her at all... Would your efforts be wasted?
That was my feeling about talking to her about it and I don't think it'll come as a shock! I expect they will replace her as hers is a protected post for the next couple of years and we're one of the few bits of the department that actually makes a profit selling our services outside the council.
Assuming you are one of the professional librarians, get chartered quickly. If chartership is required, then that will definitely give you the edge. Can you do any shadowing at other organisations?
I would hold off on talking to your manager until her retirement is officially announced, and there is a plan in place for her successor, personally. It will be much easier to contextualise your conversation. However, do ask at your 1-1 if you can have a general discussion about your plans for the future which seems more positive than "I want your job after you get your carriage clock".
Thanks to some subtle conversations I've had with my manager, it's now obvious I do indeed want to take over the world
Does her manager know she is leaving? Succession plans can be great for managers. Being ata county council it is likely there may be some re structuring to the role - adding in extra responibilities. If her manager knows that she is retiring, could you speak to her manager about succession planning - about what skills/experience they would be looking to replacer her with?
What I'm getting at it is, there would be little point sking your current maager what skills She thinks is important if higher up the chain they're thinking "aha! An opportunity to stretch that role!" - you'd want to be certain that you're triaining for the right things.
The other thing to bear in mind is presumably there is open recruitment so there is no way you could be slotted in - the management team would presumably have to give the same opportunities to everyone on your team? So if they say yes, that job will in future require accountancy skills, they couldn't just say" Guy - get yourslef on this accountancy course so you've got a chance of manager lady's job" , they'd have to say" team get yourselves on this accountancy course so you've got a chance of manager lady's job"
But yes, raising your profile, making it clear you have ambition are really good early steps to take. Good luck!
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