Switching Jobs While Staying Put


Q.  There have been some new job openings here at my company which I believe suit my personality and skill sets well.  Even a few colleagues have mentioned that I would be successful in a role.  I currently enjoy my role and have a great relationship with my boss and team of nearly two years.  But, I would really like to pursue this new opportunity.  I am concerned that pursuing this new opportunity will make it look like I am not interested in my current role.  What steps should I take to make sure I do not look like I am bailing on my current team but am looking to challenge myself and develop my skill sets?  -RB

A.  You’ve done a great job of articulating the opportunity you might want to pursue.  Since you’ve been in your current job for more than a year, you have every right to be considered for the new position. 

Normally, I recommend determining if there is interest in taking on the opportunity before discussing it with your current boss.  When talking with your current boss, start out by letting him know you are committed to the organization and its success.   Explain that colleagues suggested you might be a good fit for the new opportunity, and you feel you’re well suited for the position.  That allows you to get into the discussion without appearing you want to escape your present job.  And, of course, underscore the fact that you enjoy what you’re doing currently.  People who are not intentionally trying to escape jobs are more appealing to current and prospective bosses than those who hate their current positions. 

If this is a promotion, you’ll find that most companies today are eager to promote from within.  It sends a positive signal to the organization.  Even lateral moves are positive since they show the potential of career progression without having to leave the firm.  Good luck.

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