Post # 1
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<div>My employer has done many things to me over the past 6 months, too many to list, but there is one main issue I would like opinions on. Firstly, a new CMO came on board and although he did not take the time to get to know me or even find out what projects I manage, somehow concluded that I was “quiet”. In a formal compensation discussion he addressed his concerns, stating that I was far too quiet and needed to be more outgoing and speak up. In reality, I have fostered relationships with various executives and sales leadership, as well as area directors and RSMs due to the scope of my projects which require regular email and telephone communication with them. I do not waste my time walking around and chatting with various people or speak loudly about personal things like others do (I hear coworkers talking about very personal things and generally wasting company time chatting) – most of the time I am at my desk with my head down working as I have recently taken on a lot more work and responsibility.
In a recent conversation with the CMO about my job title and compensation he brought this up again, but this time he was pretty much referencing my reserved personality as a big reason for not giving me the appropriate job title that I deserved (again as I have assumed ownership over multiple projects my boss was managing after he quit). He claims that “no one knows who I am or what I do” and that others make comments that I am quiet. We have 200 people in this office, there are a lot of employees, impossible for everyone to know everyone. I believe he is projecting his own feelings and claiming “others” feel the same way, when maybe only 1 other person has mentioned this.
I am simply a reserved person who does actually talk a lot and make jokes and have worked to establish rapport with the various people I work cross functionally with, but I dont waste time socializing when I have a lot of work to do. What are your thoughts on this and whether it is appropriate or even reasonable to use this as a reason to hold an employee back in terms of compensation and job title?
Post # 2
bostonbride2016 : This is not a good reason to hold you back. First I have to say you need to tell them straight out what you have done for them as a company. Tell them about fostering these relationships and what projects you run and how much those projects are making for the company if that applies. I’ve had a similar problem with getting promoted because while I am outgoing sometimes and can socialize, I’m rarely in the work “cool group” if that makes sense.
If pointing out what you have done for them doesn’t work (I think it might perhaps they really don’t know what you do, bosses can be clueless at times), then I would contact a recruiter that can start a job search for you in your field so you can get paid what you’re worth.
Post # 3
- Wedding: November 2009 - New York, NY
Is the job tittle in question a leadership position? Small talk and informal conversation with staff at different levels of an organization are part of a leader’s job.
In my case, I manage 36 employees, including 4 supervisors, that are stationed in different parts of the city. An important part of establishing rapport is asking how are things going with them. That often takes the conversation to a personal level. I also need to build a relationship with managing officials located in the office my staff is stationed. On the other hand, as department head, I need to work with staff from other departments within my organization, which requires that I spend time developing those relationships, oftentimes through informal conversation.
Post # 4
Never underestimate the importance of office politics. It may not seem fair to you, but being an outgoing, friendly, team player is essential to many employers. I once worked in a large office with a woman who kept her door shut, never went to lunch with anyone else, never checked in before leaving for the day etc. She didn’t last long. This was not the type of place it was, and a lot of people really did notice. I don’t think it’s necessarily true that the CMO is projecting his own bias, but even if that were the case, it seems like a moot point.
You will just have to decide if staying put in the job is worth it to you. If it’s otherwise a great fit, you might want to make an effort to seem more outgoing and accessible to people.
I do think you ought to make some of the points that you did in your post, but try not to be defensive. Constructive criticism can be a good thing.
Post # 5
I think the important thing is how you handle yourself around him. If you are assertive and talk up your accomplishments in meetings with him, he wouldn’t have any doubts, IMO. Indeed, you can even list your projects and accomplishments and finish it up with the fact that you don’t have time for personal small talk on the company dime because you are too busy doing your job. I think that would get the hint across rather quickly. The only one who can change his perception, right or wrong, is you. Take that into your own hands and be assertive around him; make a point of saying hello; take the time to stop by his office now and then to “update” him about a project; let him know the things you have recently completed.
Again, it doesn’t matter if random people online think this is okay behavior on his part or not, but you aren’t going to get anywhere until he thinks about you differently. The only one who can do anything about that is you, and you need to start being your own best advocate. Generally and statistically speaking, men get promotions and raises because they ask for them. They aren’t afraid to take over a conversation with their boss to tell them what’s up and why they deserve what they are asking for. It’s time to step up and make sure he knows what you have told us – not just on paper, but hears it from you.
Post # 6
I agree with what other posters have said. This is just office politics with the new boss. You either play the game or move along.
Post # 7
Maybe he wants you to step up. Be assertive and show him he is wrong about you. You said you are good at fostering relationships so do that more in your workplace. Others are right. Playing nice is important in addition to your good work ethic.
Post # 8
Loving the responses thank you! Some things people have mentioned that I should address. I am in marketing and looking for a manager title, as I have taken on manager level projects. I do have many friends around the office and do chat with them when time permits and go out to lunch with people at least once per week. I had more friends before but unfortunately three of them left (Gives you an idea of the environment).
I have been very assertive and direct about what projects I am managing and all of the activities that are involved. I have communicated that my work product speaks for itself and my manager wrote a raving review for me before he quit. I know that in order to get what you want you just speak up and I have advocated for myself and straight up asked for what I think I deserve and provided concrete evidence as to why I deserve it, on two occasions.
Thanks for the advice keep it coming!
Post # 9
I understand your struggle and agree with the poster who said that it’s a game and you have to learn how to play it. I received similar feedback and have combatted this perception that I’m not outgoing enough by signing up for team-building projects and by making sure I speak a certain amount of times in each overall team meeting (not project focused meetings, but general team updates and such). Personally, I hate when people make a bunch of comments in meetings that don’t further the conversation but it’s a game I have to play so I play it.
Post # 10
It sounds to me like he didn’t do his homework on what you’ve been doing, decided not to give you a promotion and came up with a bullshit reason for it. Doesn’t sound like he actually referenced your work or how you’ve been handling your job duties at all. When he said he doesn’t know anything about you, that speaks more to his incompetence than yours. Pay attention to that. This guy doesn’t take you seriously. If he is in charge of your future at this company, I would start looking at other companies.
Post # 11
I’m with @peridot456… this reeks to me of: he made up his mind (with no reasons) and then went ahead and dug around for some reasons.
If they’re going to ask you to manage without being paid as a manager, that’s BULLSHIT. Did you have a list of the projects you’d led on hand? With solid numbers regarding when you delivered, how big the team was, and other important numbers for marketing in paritcular (I don’t know the field)?
I really hope you throw down a huge stack of evidence that he’s wrong in front of him and ask him if (A) he interviewed ANY of the poeple who helped you pull off your projects and (B) if he plans on continuing to ask you to manage these projects without the corresponding pay.
Throwing resumes out to other companies in the meantime and brushing up your linkedin profile seems like a really good idea. An offer in hand will push your CMO to reconsider.. and if he doesn’t, screw it–go somewhere that values you. Also, you might get some good feedback from those other places regarding things you can work on, if there is a deficiency in your resume you don’t know about.
Good luck bee, I hope this works out for you!
Post # 12
bostonbride2016 : this sounds like the perfect storm of office politics and some vaguely sexist expectations. i had similar complaints when i worked in an office job (now i’m remote, and much happier). the complaints were not about my performance, about me causing problems or being unreliable, but merely being “unsociable”. i believe it was because i ate lunch at my desk with my headphones on and never gossiped at all. i actually started putting “small talk” and “social lunches” on my outlook calendar. i walked around and did small talk for about 20 minutes twice a week (memorized co-worker life details and followed up, etc), and i went out to lunch with co-workers once a week. i also started bringing homemade cookies in about 4 times a year. it totally sucked…but it worked. i got several more promotions after that.
Post # 13
I’m much the same as you, no nonesense get the work done. I’m also very reserved. But you really do have to play the game. Being open to a little chit chat before diving into the topic at hand shows people who you are, helps them get more comfortable around you as it builds relationships, and helps leave it more memorable when you interact with others.
I had to phrase the chit chat in a business benefits way to myself to motive me to engage in it. I now manage over 100 people with team leads and supervisors in my groups. Chit chat does help as a manager even if it irks me. It’s part of the managing role, being warm, open, and approachable can all be shown through some chit chat.
Post # 14
bostonbride2016 : that sounds very much like my work style, and I’ve come up against the same problem. I guess it’s all about visibility… your work may be great, but it’s not visible to the guy deciding on promotions. You say you’ve got a great rapport with people you work with directly. Are you able to work with him more so he develops an idea of your abilities?
Post # 15
Well, I’m just gonna call this and hope I’m wrong. He sounds like a sexist. He doesn’t see you as a “Leader”but had no legit reason why. Vaguely would like you to be more “social” and aggressive.
Yeah. He is looking for qualities we associate with men. “Confidence” and aggression (but in a woman, that’s called the b word).
He probably doesn’t even realize his own bias. This isn’t to say PP don’t have a point re asserting yourself, but you said you have been.