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Is it time to move on?

Hi All

I am currently in a standalone HRM role that doesn't really have the support or backing from the MD (my line manager).
It's made my confidence drop dramatically and second guess everything I'm doing in fear of messing up and loosing my job.

My last role was standalone HRM reporting into the states and made redundant and the role previous to that was standalone.

As it's been almost 5 years without working with a team or anyone else in HR I'm wondering what would people recommend.

In my previous roles I've always had the support/backing of my manager which helped my confidence grow, now I don't have that as the owner (my manager) just likes to find the blame when things go wrong then move on- I'm second guessing everything I'm doing, I'm anxious all the time and starting to dread coming into work.

Just looking for some guidence really as I am struggling to cope with the pressure.

Thank you!

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  • Dear Alice,

    Irrespective of the role, to feel like this in a position is just screaming 'move on'. You spend a lot of time and effort at work, to be this miserable is just not worth it. Find someone/somewhere who will appreciate you!
  • In reply to Teresa:

    Thank you Teresa!
    I'm looking for other roles but unsure if it's the right time now to be looking for a move to within a team rather than on my own again.
  • I agree move on - it sounds like he cant or wont change

    Think it might be an idea to move into a team rather than stand alone
  • In reply to Alice Hoare:

    Maybe interview for both types and see what suits you better (seems to have the better work environment for you). But definitely leave - that's not healthy!
  • I am a big enthusiast for the idea of following the direction of best mental health and if you are, as you say, "struggling to cope" then I echo Teresa in the idea that it might be time to move on.

    However, I've a couple of thoughts for you to mull over before you do.

    First, you don't feel you have the support of your MD. But if you could win that support and transform the position HR holds in your SME, that could be a powerful personal development step. In the context of doing what's best for your long-term mental health, sometimes (sometimes) it can pay off for one's long-term well-being to know that you *can* not only take the heat, but use it to create something better. You may find it hard to talk to your MD (it sounds like he/she isn't the easiest person to open up to!), so if you can't actually have a clear discussion about what he/she expects from your HR service, at least you should be able to reflect on your experience to articulate what you *think* he or she expects.

    If you can begin to provide the service the MD is looking for - even if it's not the one you want to provide - you may be able to establish the relationship of trust you need to actually have the conversation about where the business is going and how HR can help it get there. You may still want to leave, but at least you can leave with a powerful narrative about transforming relationships and adding value.

    Second, stay or go, if you've been in "manager" roles with no actual team to manage for a while, you may be better off looking for an HR Advisor, Senior Advisor or Business Partner role for your next step away from standalone and back into a team. This may feel like a backwards step but will be a useful insight into working within an HR team and, in the right role, can be a real career advance after being standalone for so long.
  • In reply to Robey:

    Thanks Robey.
    I think my main question to myself is do I have the energy now to transform the mindset of HR in this SME- my honest answer is no. I'm struggling to find the fight in me and I think I'd rather go to another company as Advisor etc. and gain my confidence and more experience as I also feel doubt on if I'm doing anything HR related correct never mind being able to add value.

    Definately food for thought for the type of business I'd like to move onto :)
  • Steve Bridger

    | 0 Posts

    Community Manager

    23 Jul, 2018 17:14

    In reply to Robey:

    Great post, Robey. From what Alice has shared in previous posts, we know the MD is probably not for turning.
  • Hi Alice

    Sounds like a horrible position you are in, and some great advice as always from the community. Just thought I'd add something from my experience - if it is working in a team that you are looking for, then now is probably a good time to do it. From my own experience once you have been a standalone HR Manager for a while it can be difficult to get back into a team environment - some people can make the assumption that you are used to being 'in charge' and so won't like to take direction from anyone else. Also, being in a team gives you more opportunity to gain experience of managing others directly, another skill that's difficult to come by if you work only as standalone (if that is where your interest lies).

    I'm not saying that standalone is bad - of my last three roles the two that have been standalone have the been the most challenging and enjoyable, and there is a great deal to be said for it in terms of really getting to use your brain but it does need to be in the right Company, which sadly it sounds like you are definitely not.

    It's really down to what you enjoy about work - I have to say the only thing I miss about my last role is having another HR colleague to call and say 'what do you think', or to vent at, or to laugh about things with. Standalone HR can be lonely if you don't have a boss who you can talk to, but if you do, it can be very, very rewarding.

    Anyway, hope this helps!
  • While Robey's suggestions are excellent, you will be best placed to know whether they're worth trying or whether your MD is a lost cause. It sounds as though the latter is the case, which means an emphatic "yes" to moving on from me. Have been standalone for 18 years, can be good if the support is there and an absolute nightmare if it is not (and yes, have been in both situations and feel your pain).