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Ambition gone wild

I used to work with a goofy guy who was so restless in his job that he used to apply for nearly every position that came open in our company.

It didn’t matter to him that the job wasn’t one he desired or whether he was well-qualified, he just couldn’t control his ambition.

I tried to reason with him. I told him he wasn’t doing himself any favors by applying for all these jobs. He just didn’t understand that he was creating a nuisance of himself among the managers who would have to interview him for jobs he wasn’t qualified for.

“If I don’t apply for jobs, how are they going to know I want to get ahead?” he asked. “Management likes it when you show initiative. That’s how you get ahead.”

I failed to convince him that he was shooting himself in the foot. Around the company, people laughed every time they saw a new job posting because they knew one guy who was going to apply.

Everyone laughed, except for management.

One manager was kind enough to take this guy aside and tell him that he had a reputation within the management ranks as “an indiscriminate job applicant” and that was probably more of factor in not getting promoted than his competency level. Some managers, he was told, thought he was an unhappy employee and wouldn’t be happy in any job he was hired for.

Here are some things to ponder before applying for other positions with your current employer:

Don’t rush into pursuing another job. You need to take the time to reflect on what you want out of a job, determine what things are valuable to you and what makes you happy. Do a skills assessment, and then overlay that with the skills required for each job before you pursue it.

Evaluate yourself through the eyes of others. Ask your friends and coworkers to list your good attributes as well as your deficiencies. You should already know these, but if more than one person points out something you haven’t noticed, it’s probably worthy of thinking about.

Don’t just take a job because it was offered to you. Make sure that you are accepting a job that is on your career path. Make certain it will lead you in the direction of your long-term goal.

Definitely apply for suitable jobs, but make sure you are serious and have thought-through whether you would be happy in this job. If you are not convinced that you would be, pass over that job.

Most companies want to promote their most competent employees. One thing they don’t want to do is go through the motions of considering someone who isn’t qualified or fit for a particular job. This wastes time and ultimately will be held against you. Perhaps it will even short-circuit your career in that company.

There’s nothing wrong with having ambition, but you have to be able to demonstrate that you can control it. That’s one of the marks of maturity that employers will be looking for when they promote someone.

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I used to work with a goofy guy who was so restless in his job that he used to apply for nearly every position that came open in our company.

It didn’t matter to him that the job wasn’t one he desired or whether he was well-qualified, he just couldn’t control his ambition.

I tried to reason with him. I told him he wasn’t doing himself any favors by applying for all these jobs. He just didn’t understand that he was creating a nuisance of himself among the managers who would have to interview him for jobs he wasn’t qualified for.

“If I don’t apply for jobs, how are they going to know I want to get ahead?” he asked. “Management likes it when you show initiative. That’s how you get ahead.”

I failed to convince him that he was shooting himself in the foot. Around the company, people laughed every time they saw a new job posting because they knew one guy who was going to apply.

Everyone laughed, except for management.

One manager was kind enough to take this guy aside and tell him that he had a reputation within the management ranks as “an indiscriminate job applicant” and that was probably more of factor in not getting promoted than his competency level. Some managers, he was told, thought he was an unhappy employee and wouldn’t be happy in any job he was hired for.

Here are some things to ponder before applying for other positions with your current employer:

Don’t rush into pursuing another job. You need to take the time to reflect on what you want out of a job, determine what things are valuable to you and what makes you happy. Do a skills assessment, and then overlay that with the skills required for each job before you pursue it.

Evaluate yourself through the eyes of others. Ask your friends and coworkers to list your good attributes as well as your deficiencies. You should already know these, but if more than one person points out something you haven’t noticed, it’s probably worthy of thinking about.

Don’t just take a job because it was offered to you. Make sure that you are accepting a job that is on your career path. Make certain it will lead you in the direction of your long-term goal.

Definitely apply for suitable jobs, but make sure you are serious and have thought-through whether you would be happy in this job. If you are not convinced that you would be, pass over that job.

Most companies want to promote their most competent employees. One thing they don’t want to do is go through the motions of considering someone who isn’t qualified or fit for a particular job. This wastes time and ultimately will be held against you. Perhaps it will even short-circuit your career in that company.

There’s nothing wrong with having ambition, but you have to be able to demonstrate that you can control it. That’s one of the marks of maturity that employers will be looking for when they promote someone.

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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