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Dealing with Bosses and Coworkers/Applying for a job that is beyond you?



May I ask if one should apply for a job which seems to be slightly beyond one's own ablity.

I am thinking of leaving my current company to move to another company (same job). That company is advertising a new position.

I have to admit that the descriptions and responsibilities are a bit beyond my current responsibility. It seems my current manager is the best bet.

In this case, should I still apply, hoping for some luck?

Thank you.

ANSWER: Hi Kevin,

Many thanks for writing to me.

I can see why you feel the dilemma.

On the one hand, you'd like a bit of a challenge, but on the other it's more comfortable to stay where you are.

From what you've said, I think that you're really 90% of the way there. Otherwise, why would you be "hoping for some luck"?

There are a few things that you ought to consider.

One is that you need to grow. If you don't, then you'll stagnate. Your performance may even decline.

The second is that there's no guarantee that you'll be offered the job, even if you apply for it.

The third thing is that you'll only be offered the position if the company thinks that you'll be able to rise to the challenge.

So I'm inclined to tell you to apply for it.

At worst, the experience will enable you to grow in another way.

And at best, you might offered the post.

If you are interviewed and your asked about the "gap" between where you are the responsibilities in the new job, then you might even say something about wanting to grow.

One last thing. If you're really worried about the new supervisor, then use your network to learn more about him.

It could be that the job is right; just not in these circumstances.

Cheers, Bruce

Bruce Hoag, PhD
Business Coach

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thank you so much for your reply. I think I will apply.

May I ask a further question?

If I fail, will it endanger my chance once another more suitable position is opened in that same company?

I myself are targeting another position in that same company, but it is not vacant yet.

So should I still apply this time even if I fail?

Thank you.

Hi Kevin,

You must think that I'm glued to my inbox, just waiting for someone to write to me.

It's not quite like that.

But AllExperts questions take priority over almost everything else.

That's because they come from real people, like you, who need answers fast.

There's no way you can know if your application will fail.

And if you wait on the off-chance, and the other position doesn't materialise, then you'll be no further forward than your are right now.

On the plus side, if you were to be asked why you applied for the vacancy while you were looking for another position with them, you could say that you really wanted to work there, and so you were looking for every opportunity to do so.

If applying for both did hurt your chances, then I would say it's probably not a place where you'd want to work anyway.

I just finished writing an article for a management consultant. In it I talk about the need for managers to respect their employees and how that respect begins before their first day of work.

If the new company will prejudice you because you apply for both, then in my opinion they are failing to respect you as a professional.

But, if they do respect you, they'll probably think more highly of you because of your initiative.

I hope this helps you.

Good luck on your application.

I'll be interested to know what happens.

Cheers, Bruce

Bruce Hoag, PhD
Business Coach

Dealing with Bosses and Coworkers

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Dr Bruce Hoag, CPsychol AFBPsS


How to retain top talent.
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Co-wrote (with Professor Cary L Cooper, CBE) Managing Value-Based Organizations: It's Not What You Think, published in 2006.

Academy of Management, British Psychological Society

Leadership & Organization Development Journal,

PhD, Organizational Psychology, Manchester Business School

Awards and Honors
Chartered Occupational Psychologist & Associate Fellow of the British Psychological Society; Ezines Expert Author

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