Social Question

jrpowell's avatar

Have you ever not been promoted because you were too good at your job?

Asked by jrpowell (40359 points ) December 12th, 2009

This has happened to me a few times. Kinda makes the American Dream seem like bullshit. Working hard got me stuck while others got promotions.

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13 Answers

figbash's avatar

This happens a lot.

One of my old bosses actually told me not to submerge myself in my job totally and to make sure I kept a little distance from it. He told me to delegate whenever possible because otherwise, people will keep you in that position and hire over you, because you do it so well they can’t imagine anyone else doing it better or don’t want to destabilize it. Then he pointed out a few very specific examples of people it had happened to. It was definitely interesting to know.

La_chica_gomela's avatar

One theory I learned in a class is that “The American Dream” is bullshit, that it’s an idea made up to keep the working class working hard, and to keep “the masses” from overthrowing “the elite” by keeping them thinking that if they just work hard enough, they can attain that status as well.

ratboy's avatar

I’ve often not been promoted because I wasn’t too good at my job. Is that close enough?

Facade's avatar

I have no experience with this, but I agree with @La_chica_gomela. The system in the US is poorly and selfishly constructed.

Parrappa's avatar

@La_chica_gomela, yeah, way to stick it to the man!
/s

jerv's avatar

Not that I know of, but I have been turned down for a few jobs for being over-qualified.

Probably just as well that I’ve rarely been promoted though since us Aspies are better at doing than at managing. Considering how competent we are at technical things and how incompetent we generally are at administrative/social things, you would think that we’d be the perfect employees….

Haleth's avatar

I’ve seen this happen a lot at jobs. In my experience, people that throw themselves 100% into a job don’t spend as much effort on trying to build rapport with others. Getting the work done is important, but if your personal relationships and people skills aren’t solid, you’re being less efficient because it’s harder for people to communicate with you. Bosses aren’t perfect, either. In an ideal world, they’d judge you ideally based just on your performance, but you have to make sure that they remember your good performance when it’s time to promote someone. Edit: favoritism. But it’s natural to want to help someone who makes you feel good, even if it isn’t fair.

La_chica_gomela's avatar

@jerv: What’s an Aspie?

jerv's avatar

@La_chica_gomela One who has Aspergers Syndrome. It’s a form of autism, but saying much more (and there is much more to say about it) would be thread-jacking so I’ll leave it at that.

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

I too am an Aspie. My employer has tried to promote me into management. I was almost fired for refusing. I could never understand why an employer would want to take a happy, highly productive employee and force them to become an unhappy incompetant manager. I understand that some highly productive people have the opposite problem because they have made themselves indispensable where they are.

jerv's avatar

@stranger_in_a_strange_land That is why I liked where I worked just before I moved from NH. Sure, the pay sucked but it was small enough (30–40 people) that the only way to move up would be to replace either the Production Manager who had been in his current position since before I graduated High School, or replaced the General Manager and run the whole company. They put me in charge of the machine shop (3 people, including me) and that was easy since the other two didn’t need managing anyways.

john65pennington's avatar

Stop and think about this…....15% of the people do 100% of the work. this should tell you something about why the bs’s are promoted and the rest of the people are not. someone has to run the country or a company.

jerv's avatar

@john65pennington I’m not quite sure where you are going with that. Are you saying that the managers also do all of the building , measuring, QA, shipping, phone calling, and cleaning? Last I checked, the military was doing quite a bit more than the Commander-in-chief. Does your superior patrol every road and do every investigation?

So either I misread that or you mis-spoke.

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