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Being passed over for a project

 
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I have a huge problem - I first started at a firm doing web development. When there was no more funding, I was trained on batch/db2. After that, I was traded to another department to do more batch. Now I'm in a department which does both batch/web development. I've brought up my experience in college as well as on the job about doing more web development in my current department. I was given some web development, I excelled at this - doing better than someone who has been in this project for years now, and people who came in after me. My team lead was extremely impressed, but my boss refuses to give me any more web development work. He keeps making excuses and puts aside whatever qualifications I have. I get along really well with everyone in my department and I do extra things when it comes to the project I am working on. He promoted the other person who has been here for years(his fav.), and also promoted the other person who came in a few months after me(giving projects under the table).
I've looked into other departments, but I need more experience in web development or else I cannot get a higher paying job out there or I might never do something which I will definitely excel at. I would like to get rid of batch completely; I don't mind knowing some SQL. I am looking into the SCJP and the web component cert. as well. I am also 27 years old; could this be a factor in my boss refusing to promote me? Is there anything else I can do to improve my chances of staying in the web development field?
 
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If you've been there more than 12months the answer can be found here..
www.jobserve.com
 
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Cheryl:
- Take a look at your skill-set and education.
- How does your education fit within the company. If you do not have a BS degree and the other folks in the office do, well then you have your answer.
- Are you sure there is web work to be completed? If you can identify such web work - do a proposal (even if only a verbal query) and present it to your manager. Remember the chain of command -- important to follow the "rules of the game" --- important not to loose your temper.
- I would confront your manager (set up a meeting/time). I meet with my manager once a week (whether I want to or not - company policy). At that meeting, present your issues, query. Ask for an answer. Set a deadline for an answer ("I would like to discuss this again in 2 weeks and hope you can provide me with an answer").
- At the second meeting, if you are not happy, then you present your case. If your manager is dragging his/her feet, then inform them that you intend to take the matter to their supervisor.
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- On side note. At 27 yrs of age - you are too young to have the age factor come into play. I am 39 yrs old - and don't see it.
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- Important thing. Do not vent on co-workers or management. You need to setup a plan of attack (like what I did above), then follow-through.
- If you are not happy or don't get the results you wanted, then it's time to re-evaluate your situation, and perhaps like Simon said - go for another job.
- Loyalty does not exist in today's world. So don't play into management's guilt trip.
-------
- Gotta run.
John Coxey
(jpcoxey@aol.com)
 
Cheryl Gray
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Thank you very much for the advice. I do have a higher degree than most people here but it's just favoritism that's going on here. I have also been at this company for almost 6 years now.
I have been asking my boss on 3 different occassions for this work, but I will try to arrange another meeting. I am not going to accept no.
My boss is very understanding when it comes to giving vacations, taking a day off, etc, but I need some work & $.
I could only hope that things will work out. In the meantime there's backstabbing between co-workers because of what he's doing. I don't like it.
However, I will be in his face again.
 
John Coxey
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Cheryl:
- Just read your reply.
- I would set up a formal meeting with your manager to discuss the situation and your feelings.
- I would approach this meeting in two phases:
Phase 1:
- Mention that you would like to do web-based projects. Mention that you have heard / know of several web-based projects in the company. Ask if you can get on on eof them.
- Ask for specific timeframe to get on a project. Get specific timeframe to follow-up with manager.
- You don't want your request to go onto back burner and have your request just "fade out of memory" (What your manager is probably hoping will happen - outta site - outta mind).

Phase 2:
- If management balks at phase 1. Mention your feelings about "favoratism". Mention how you feel that your career is being "threatened" by this "favoratism". Ask if you manager feels the same way.
- Management will probably give you a line of b.s. Ask manager to give you specifics as to why you haven't been given web-service project.
There might be a valid reason you don't know about.
- If you are not satisfied with management's answer. Or if they won't agree to pursue the matter on your timeframe (remember phase 1), then let manager know you intend to take this to a higher level.
----------
Ok - that being said - you need to remember a few things.
1. If you approach this as a professional, you will not get disciplined/fired or anything like that. Remind yourself of this - so you can get good sleep at night. So don't worry.
2. You need to prepare. You are like a lawyer going into the courthouse...you need to defend your case. Draw up a list of questions that you have and a list of possible answers that you expect from manager. Now, have a list of your own responses for the responses from your manager.
(this is from "Lawyer School - Class 1 - Day 1").
3. Don't get upset, or cry, or scream, or threaten to sue, or wet yourself, or jump up and down, or go postal. Yeah, it's an emotional rollercoaster. You saw it when going to college, it's just the same thing all over again.
I mention this, as I have to remind myself when I go into my weekly one-on-ones with my own boss, that I have to accept criticism and not to explode. Where I work at -- I get hell at least once a month at my one-on-ones about taking a 2 hour lunch break to go work out at the gym.
Is doesn't matter to management that I come in at 5AM to 6PM. Doesn't matter that it's Sat and I am in office typing messages on JavaRanch waiting for back-end systems to bounce (am shutting down/restarting WebSphere on AS400 - trying to get JSP code to work). All managment cares about is that I took a 2 hour lunch break and made him look bad. Rediculous and childlike...but I just deal with it.
And that's what you gotta be able to do...
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All that being said...prepare, go have your meeting, and then let us know how it goes. Make sure you get a committment from manager - that's your primary goal. Either a committment to a followup meeting or a commitment to start web-dev project.
--------
Have fun, let us know what happens.
John Coxey
(jpcoxey@aol.com)
 
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Hi John,
I have been tracking your comments since the day I saw your resume posted. I'm only reiterate someone said earlier, you ought to think about writing motivation book. You will have more chance to shine under national spotlight than any so called self-improvement gurus outthere because you have more substance, more class, more leadership and grace.
Substance is shown through your bio real or not, if someone desire so much, he/she will find the way to investigate. I'm not worry much about that because I'm a firm believed in everyone deserve a fifteen minutes of fame. The most important of all, you know what are you talking about.
Class is shown in your adaptability and make the best out of the situation. You don't create a barrier between people with different background and capability. Someone may prefer that class is when you reach a higher status than someone else, you will not associate with them. That is a definition of snob in my own dictionary.
Leadership is shown when someone does not know, understand, or confuse, you take time to explain. Even though, you admitted in early on that your temper could go short. I'm admire that it takes a real person to admit his own weakness. In essence, it shows you have grace.
Regards,
MCao
 
John Coxey
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Matt:
Thanks for the comments.
I may do an article on job interviewing for Java Ranch - once I get the time. Right now, I am totally booked. I am working 40-50 hour week job, teaching, studying for SCWCD, and start nursing school in 3 weeks, and have to make road trip to St. Louis (4 hrs each way) to pick up a new $1200 (really!!!) kitty. Got one last year and just love her personality, so figured I would get another one.
They are both "fixed" - so can't breed them.
-----
With regards to real-world experiences.
This is what I talk about during my breaks when teaching class.
I teach at a technical college, and most of the students are just getting started in life. Either out of college, changing careers, getting out of Army (etc) and going to school.
So I relate my real-world experiences to them.
Actually having a lot of fun doing the teaching thing. But I gotta watch myself.
I gave (what I thought would be a 1 hour open book exam - all essay - on telephone systems in USA). Well, we started at 6pm and got done at 10:30pm. OOOPPPPSSSS!!!
I have 12 students and each one wrote about 10 pages each for this exam. I am going to do laundry tonight - so will grade their exams and also homework (forgot about that), while at laundromat tonight.
Gotta run,
John Coxey
(jpcoxey@aol.com)
 
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"Cheryl G ",
Welcome to JavaRanch.
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