so I really like my job. I’ve had a jr. project manager position at a web/software company for about 9 months now. Prior to that I did freelance web design.
I like the job because I have been learning a ton-I have watched projects fail, and am learning a ton.
The problem is we are a small company, and the division I am in had reviews recently. The person who brings in the business for us was given a very ominous review and he basically shared with me that he is going to quit.
As a small business, this means our division could go away…unless they find someone quick.
Does anyone have any advice for me if I want to keep my job in some way? I’d even work part time if they crumble. The other side of the story too is that we have a bigger division that has a fortune 500 client that is not going away anytime soon (it’s all they work on)-the problem is that the Sr. Project Manager over there probably thinks I am too young/unqualified to do anything for her…but her Art Director has seen that I am pretty open-minded and I have some graphic/coding talents from freelancing…should I try to further my relationship with that side just in case? What can I do?
I don’t know just how big your company is, but divisions go away all the time, contracts end or progress to a different phase where as many people aren’t needed. It sounds as if you have a broad base of skills and are willing to work. That being said it is always necessary to protect yourself. Lateral moves within your company can be a very good way to continue learning and at least stick around for an upward opportunity to present itself. Short answer, yes I would further my relationship with the other side, it can’t hurt in the short run and might be a saving move in the long term.
I agree with Lanzy, if the only problem is that your division may go away then I wouldn’t worry necessarily. Junior guys are actually pretty easy to move around, especially ones that are smart and trainable. Keep in mind that you cost less. Is there any reason that you say the other manager wouldn’t think your qualified? Did she say something to you, or did you hear rumors about her?
Definitely establish a relationship with other people you’d like working with and for. If there is anything you can do in your present position to help them out occasionally, that’s also a good thing. It will give them a taste of your work ethic and abilities. Once you’ve got a positive relationship with them, let them know you’d enjoy working for them someday.
This is exactly what saved my job this year. I knew my old group was likely to be eliminated at some point, and it had become a miserable place to work. I started looking externally, and the people who knew my work kind of figured that was the case and didn’t want to lose me. A position was opened in a group with a manager who I had an excellent working relationship with.
By doing my old job well, I was not the problem to her that some people in my old group were. In addition, I had sometimes done things that her people were technically responsible for, but I picked up the slack when they were swamped. Many people in her group liked me.
It was the easiest job interview I’ve ever had. We sat in a room and she said, “Well, I don’t have any questions for you. Do you have any for me?” Boom, I was hired. Darn good thing, because my old group was eliminated in August.
I suspect the issue with the Sr. Project Manager for the other group not liking me has to do with my age and being in a similar position as her for my group. I agree with the notion that I am junior and filling a more senior role, but I can just sense she does not take me seriously and might be hostile to having to take me in. The owner of our company does like me though, and I can see him forcing her to take me if something happened.