Q. I work for a small company and our president recently decided to change staff titles to better align with those of our clients. I was hired as a director (two years ago), but now I'm an associate. I have 14 years of experience and a master's degree. In my last job, I was assistant director, and I took this job as a step up. I do marketing, while others in my office do project work, so I feel like the president doesn't value my experience or degree in the same way he does the others (who manage billable projects). I am torn on whether to say anything.
A: I would definitely have this conversation with your president since it is important to you and how valued you feel at your job. It also seems important to see how the president sees your job now, since it sounds like the scope has changed. This is important for you to clarify since you may decide you like the new changes or you don't. But, it is best to be clear. Don't feel bad about asking. If you say in a professional manner, "I wanted to meet with you to better understand what you see as the new scope and responsibilities of my job since it seems to have changed," this can be viewed positively.
Before you have that conversation, you could do some market research to see what others in similar jobs are called and what their responsibilities are. Most websites on jobs (careerbuilder.com, glassdoor.com) can share that information.
Q. I work for a health care provider that runs numerous campaigns throughout the year (employee benevolent fund, United Way, bake sales for nursing scholarships, etc.). While it is stated that employees are not required to participate in these various campaigns, departments are recognized for 100 percent participation. The certificates are framed and proudly displayed in my department. Not only can I not afford to support every endeavor, I already support other charitable organizations outside the workplace. But since I am on a team of three people, my lack of participation will mean the department does not get a 100 percent participation recognition. I am feeling pressured to take part. How should I handle this?