What to do if you've outgrown your role?

Your job consumes the majority of your waking day – we’re all at work for at least 8 hours each day. So, if you’ve lost your excitement for your job then a major part of your life is unbalanced. Having to drag yourself to the office each day isn’t something anyone wants to do. There are usually two reasons why you’ve lost excitement for your job – either outgrown your role but you’re not ready to give up and move on just yet or you’re just not happy working at your company anymore. Figuring out how to find satisfaction again depends on you understanding which of the two buckets you fall into. We’ve broken down the two situations to help you figure out what your next move should be.

Stay

If you enjoy the culture at your firm and you get along well with the people that you work with, then that has to hold some weight in your decision. Perhaps the company itself is not the problem and it’s your role that just doesn’t challenge you anymore. If the assignments that used to challenge and fulfil you simply no longer do then you’ve got to make some kind of adjustment. It’s probably a sign that you’ve become really good at your job because you’ve been able to develop true expertise but we all want to grow, learn new things, and develop new skills - sitting in the same job doing the same things over and over is what’s going to drain the excitement out of your life.

If you recognise that you do enjoy working at your company, the good news is you can potentially find a way to be happy in your role again. What needs to change is the kind of projects you work on, the tasks you do, and the growth trajectory for your future. If you’re going to stay and you want to get your excitement back then the onus is on you to be proactive and try and have a discussion with your manager. Set up a meeting to explore how you can take on challenging new projects. The good thing is, this indicates a certain level of ambition which is usually strongly supported by businesses – it shows that you want more than just coasting through your job. You’ll also get a better response if you go to the meeting with some concrete ideas because that makes it easier for your manager to say yes. But, remember the onus is on you to make things happen and see if your company can support your ambitions.

Leave

Being unhappy in your job can stifle your happiness, creativity, and even your ability to do your job to the best of your ability. No one wants to be in that situation and if you are then you’ve got to explore your options. Deciding to leave your job and explore other opportunities can be a difficult decision to make and the best way to make it is through self-reflection. You need to ask yourself whether the company you’re at meets your objectives and your ambitions. Are you happy working with the people around you? Do you get along with your supervisor? Are there growth opportunities in your role? If you answer in the negative to any one of those questions then it may be time to start looking around. Perhaps you do enjoy working at your company and you get along with everyone that you work with but there simply isn’t room for you to grow. That doesn’t have to be a bad thing, sometimes people and companies simply outgrow each other and if there aren’t any opportunities for you to grow then you may need to look for a new opportunity. If you decide to do so then there are a couple basic things to do to ensure that you find the right role. Firstly, conceptualise what it is about your current role that you don’t like and what is it that you want in your new role. Secondly, gauge the market with your experience and have an idea of the salary level you believe you are worth. And, lastly, get in touch with a trustworthy consultant who can help you manage the process. They will be able to give you the right advice and open up doors that you wouldn’t normally have access to.

No one wants to be unhappy in their job and no one should have to be. Be honest with yourself and try and identify whether you want to stay and make it work, and if that isn’t possible, don’t feel bad about looking for something new that excites you. The onus is on you to figure out what action you need to take to find happiness in your career again.

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