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3 ways to put your career back on track

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in Your Office Coach

Question: “I was a high achiever with no interpersonal skills. I really didn’t know how to talk to people. I was promoted to a management position, with several employees reporting to me. However, I was later demoted because I lacked “people skills.” Since then, I have had a major internal overhaul, and my attitude toward others is completely different. I would like to get my career back on track. Do you think I can change management’s perception of me or should I just move on to another company?” -- Changed for the Better

Marie's Answer: Congratulations on taking an honest look at yourself and making some difficult changes.  Your “new attitude” will definitely help to rehabilitate your career. To find out if this can be accomplished at your present company, take these steps:

1.    Schedule individual career discussions with the people who control your future. This might include your boss, your boss’s boss or the HR manager. 

2.    Explain that you now understand why you had problems in your management position. Describe your shift in attitude and give specific examples of improved working relationships. 

3.    Indicate that your goal is to eventually get back into management.  Explain how your leadership style would be different now and ask for an opportunity to demonstrate this.  For example, you might offer to lead a project team or fill in when your boss is away. 

If management gives you another chance, make the most of it. But if not, be thankful that you learned a valuable lesson and start exploring other options. You might actually enjoy having a fresh start.

To understand what it takes to make personal changes, see How to Change Problem Behaviors.

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Amber February 5, 2013 at 7:08 am

It is very delicate line between professional approach to an employee and being harassed by managers. Often managers and employers aloud themselves making inappropriate comments or pushing people to the corner to achieve their own goals. If they are treated the same way, they could see it disrespectful.
If the managers / employers are suffer problems ( lack of income in business, unhappy privet life or other issues) they might want to compensate it on other employees.
Long term stress at work could cause lowering of self esteem and lack of faith in own abilities. They use their power to intimidate people and stay on the top all the time. Overall being a victim won’t make you happy. My advice – stay strong and remain professional. Believe in yourself and don’t let them get to you!

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