4 Steps to Securing a Job Change Where You Are Now

BY Kathy Crosett
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If you’ve been working the same position for a while, you might want to think about securing a job change. Engaged employees often want a promotion or change in their day-​to-​day routines. This desire is natural if you took a job that doesn’t make use of a skill you have. But it can be tricky asking your boss for a different role. Here are four steps to securing a job change that makes use of your talents.

  1. Clarify Your Current Responsibilities
  2. Develop Your Plan
  3. Explain How Your Proposal Helps 
  4. Apply for an Open Position

Clarify Your Current Responsibilities

Before you start a job-​change conversation, think about what you want to accomplish. You may want to clarify your responsibilities. If your duties have changed at work, it’s perfectly acceptable to ask your supervisor to explain what you are accountable for. Dr. Mary Dowd points out that this is an excellent way to uncover duplication of effort. Having that information can help you when it’s time to propose a change. 

Develop Your Plan

You may be excited about the idea of taking on different tasks on a daily basis. But think about the situation from your manager’s perspective. An outstanding manager will be on board with helping you progress professionally. Other managers may be a little more self-​serving. Or they may be overwhelmed and not willing to move your request to the top of their list.

If that’s the situation you’re in, be brave about securing a job change. You’ll need to present your idea in a way that shows how your manager will benefit. If you have an idea about setting up a new process in the department, think it all the way through before you start talking about it. Do your homework in terms of showing how your solution will save the department time and money. And if you’re pitching yourself and the one who can handle the tech issues with the new CRM you want to install, for example, be prepared to explain how your current skills aren’t being used.

Explain How Your Proposal Helps 

Set a meeting with your manager, possibly in a private location, when you can chat without interruption. If you can explain how you can carry out the change with minimal participation from your manager, as H.V. MacArthur suggests, you’ll have a better chance of getting a thumbs-up. 

Apply for an Open Position

You might also find yourself in a situation where your dream job has just opened in the company. Lisa McQuerrey suggests that you carefully plan how to proceed. Mentally review the situations of co-​workers who changed jobs in the past year or so. Were their changes successful? If so, you might be able to pattern your change after theirs.

Above all, you want to maintain the respect and support of your supervisor. You might also want them to recommend you for the position. Start the process by writing down why you’re a good candidate for the open position. Then ask for a meeting where you can speak privately about your desire to increase your responsibilities. Be sure to thank your supervisor for their support and the help they’ve given you, especially if they hired you into the organization.

Securing New Job Responsibilities

When you're securing a job change, you need to maintain positive relationships with previous supervisors and co-​workers. Doing so indicates you’re a trustworthy professional. Our research shows that 38% of sales reps leave an organization because of a lack of opportunities. Don't wait for an opportunity to come to you. Create one in your current company.