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Mummy track - end of upwards career and back a step?

(14 Posts)
rubyblue Mon 15-Jun-09 21:00:17

Posted on this before but could do with some wise words before meeting to discuss a potential demotion (at my request) tomorrow. Been back six months, have two tough bosses and not enjoying the management stuff (usual caught in the middle between team and seniors) so ended up asking for a demotion. Kinda regret this now as it will have affect family finances and my pride is hurt after working hard to get there and in the job. But I feel like life is one big juggling act. The lot of the working mum. Is this the way career goes post-baby? Just feels like a backwards step but I'm trying to see it as a work/life balance choice. And it is my choice.

Advice from anyone who has done this please. Is life better for you?

AtheneNoctua Mon 15-Jun-09 21:09:20

I am rather the opposite of you. I see a fmaily to support as a reason to work harder and be more driver. I would never in a million years ask for a demotion.

But...

I am not you. If this is what you want, than go for it. However, I must say, you don't seem very happy with the decision. Are you doing this because you want to or because you think you are suppoesd to?

pasturesnew Mon 15-Jun-09 21:10:58

I've not done this, think it might be tricky given you are staying with existing employer but might be a good stepping stone to get into the kind of role you want - I wouldn't be surprised if your existing employer gave you a certain amount of management work etc. anyway because they know you can do it. I would see how it goes, you can always move into a similar role somewhere else and then choose to work your way up again or "coast" as you wish. Good luck!

rubyblue Mon 15-Jun-09 21:14:17

Thing is, I can't coast in my job or in the 'new role' and I'm pretty determined at work and enjoy it. I'm not sure I really want the demotion but for the wrong reasons (like the salary, job title etc), whereas if I did revert back to oldish job, would be more in control of my working day and hopefully left alone without having to deal with all the hr s**t!
Good point about me getting landed with stuff though.

pasturesnew Mon 15-Jun-09 21:19:32

Carry on like that and you'll only get promoted again!! All you can do is try it out, like trying out part-time working. If you put it like that you could ask for the promotion again in 6 months or something.

sazzerbear Mon 15-Jun-09 21:22:04

You have to put your family first and work isn't worth the extra stress (easy to say, I know). People will think more of you for being honest rather than trying to do it all and failing. You sound like you are very conscientious and there will be plenty of time for promotion in the future when the time and the role is right! Good luck grin

rubyblue Mon 15-Jun-09 21:23:52

Hmmm, pasturesnew, don't think they would promote me again as they are trying to save salary budget. Long story but I've felt a bit pushed into this but have also been thinking about this for a while too (like years, ever since I got promoted). I mean, can management just not suit people? I thought i was an ok manager but turns out I'm seen as being too tough and blunt.

rubyblue Mon 15-Jun-09 21:26:19

Ah cheers sazzerbear, that's cheered me up! Yeah, the way it's come about hasn't been well handled by them and I think I'm being too nice and making it easy for them. But then it might only be a drop of 2k and tbh, for that, I would gladly give up the title and have an easier job. And I'd like another baby and the thought of 'doing it all' just depresses me. Last time I was expected to do big work trips abroad when I was quite heavily preggers.

pasturesnew Mon 15-Jun-09 21:28:35

Think you'll just have to be really really clear about new job description then or they might think they're getting the same as before but cheaper. Use it as an opportunity to get the things you like and don't like out of work and see what you come up with. I would focus more on the "at work" aspects than just on when you can clock off to go home to your real life otherwise it could still turn out to be a job you're not that keen on. It is good in this respect that you are seen as tough and blunt, it means you can tell them exactly what you want.

sazzerbear Mon 15-Jun-09 21:31:11

Management's OK but you're dealing with people and all their funny little ways ultimately, which is the sticking point! At least as a straight talking manager, staff know where they stand I much prefer this), however if you have a difficult manager yourself, it makes it even more difficult.

rubyblue Mon 15-Jun-09 21:44:02

I just can't read my manager. She's fairly new and not always clear in what she wants and she's encouraged my team to go direct to her rather than come to me first which of course, has undermined me. And after defending a member of my team on numerous occasions, I found out that she was really backstabbing. So sick of it all really. Downside is that I'd be back in the ranks again with the backstabbers!
Thing is I like the nuts and bolts of the job and the place I work, just all the politics I find wearing. Good advice about the job description. I'm being pretty tough on the salary and job title, think it's the least i deserve.

flowerybeanbag Tue 16-Jun-09 10:04:41

Some people just aren't suited to management, no. There is a tendency to promote people who are good at their job to be a manager of other people doing that job, but managing a team requires different skills and sometimes either people don't have the skills and/or they are not given the right training or support needed to develop those skills. Acknowledgement is needed that management is a different skill and therefore bunging someone good at job A into managing doesn't mean it will work, or not without appropriate support and training.

No idea whether that's true in your case obviously, but it's very common.

AtheneNoctua Tue 16-Jun-09 14:15:51

It sounds to me like they are the bullies and you are taking the wrap with your demotion. It sounds like where I used to work. I think your manager is threatened by you and trying to move you out of the way. Why else would she want your staff to go directly to her? Let me guees. She probably also "forgets" to tell you department information which ch conveniently remembers to tell others.

If I am a painting an accurate picture, SHE and not you is the difficult one.

pasturesnew Tue 16-Jun-09 22:04:42

Hi Rubyblue, hope it went OK today.

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