Have No confidence
Unicornshorn · 04/03/2023 15:13
I've worked in a small charity for almost 20 years, previously in a few other related settings. I worked my way up in my present workplace to a senior role which I've been doing for about 10 years. I'm also a board member for a larger charity but its early days. In my current role my duties are very broad including HR, fundraising, developing programmes, safeguarding, line management- the lot! We have a mostly corporate board who I feel don't really understand the complexities of what we do and never give praise, it's always what we haven't done, not what we've achieved! We have a Chair who is really full on and I feel speaks down to me. For example, I explained something about how charity funding works and they refused to take my points on board. When another board member agreed with my point who also works for a charity, she said it was great to get true insight from them! I'm really struggling, feel I'm no good at any particular thing and I'm starting to get to the point in any meetings I'm stressing so much about what I'm going to say that the moment passes and I say nothing. I've had no appraisal for 10 years, work loads of overtime with no recognition and deal with a lot of staff problems. I'd like to move on but have serious imposter syndrome, I look at LinkedIn and feel like I'm not in on the secret that everyone else is or something. Any advice would be most welcome!
BlueHexagon · 04/03/2023 15:57
I sympathise a lot, op.
One of the problems with spending a long time in a role is you take for granted the expertise you've built up. You've talked about a wide range of skills here- be proud of your generalist excellence! Applying for jobs can help with this because you have think through and explain the work you've done.
Do you have a network outside your current organisation? Building that and talking to lots of people has helped me when I've been struggling with my org.
Do you have a manager or do you report to the chair? You deserve positive feedback as well as criticism!
I know several women who have done this course and found it's helped them understand that confidence doesn't look like LinkedIn showing off for everyone! I'm considering doing it in the next cohort...
Unicornshorn · 04/03/2023 17:55
Thank you so much. I'll have a look at that. A network is a great idea, I'll see what's around.
I don't have a manager as such, it is the Chair. I'm finding it really hard to deal with them understanding less than me about the organisation and work we do, but think they know it all.
JobbieBobbie · 04/03/2023 18:06
I agree with @BlueHexagon - just the process of writing an application for a new role will make you feel more confident as you'll have to think about all the things that you've done. I've recently done this for the first time in years, and it definitely helped.
JobbieBobbie · 04/03/2023 18:18
@BlueHexagon, that course looks really interesting. It's quite expensive though. Do you know anything about the format / duration etc.?
BlueHexagon · 04/03/2023 20:04
I don't know much about it other than what's on the website, but I know 4 people (who's opinions I respect!) who have done it and they all recommend it. I think a lot of the value is in the connections you make with other participants.
BlueHexagon · 04/03/2023 20:15
I'm a board member and I make a huge effort to not stick my oar into operational stuff. That must be v frustrating.
How about asking for advice from another charity ceo you admire? Connect on LinkedIn and then message them asking for a 15min chat to ask their advice on managing board relationships? Almost all will be delighted to be asked and happy to spare the time. And that's building your network too
Unicornshorn · 04/03/2023 21:05
That's another great idea, thank you. I could definitely make more use of LinkedIn. I've also been working a lot on strategy development and not had any support from the Chair/ the board on this, but when I update on this work I feel there's a lot of nit picking and I end up feeling more confused about what they want. I've asked if any of them would like to work on it with me, but no one is willing. I feel that I've given so much to the organisation over the years and helped it grow, but there's never even a simple thank you or well done. Thank you all so much for your advice and encouragement, it's time to think about the future.
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