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Career decision/Avoiding the pigeon hole

Postby tommyle » April 12th, 2017, 10:38 pm


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To those with experience in career do's & don'ts:

I'm the 1st & only packaging designer @ a family owned distribution company.
Been here 1 year, boss likes me so much they're renovating a new studio for me.
I think he assumes I'll stick around for 20 years, but I'm leaving in 2-3 years after my fiancée graduates here.

1) Should I tell him I'm not staying long term?
Could that jeopardize my job? Is it bad if he builds the studio and then I leave?

2) Ultimately I want to design products, not packaging.
Am I putting myself in a pigeon hole staying for another 2-3 years?
The projects here are not good btw, have managed adding portfolio pieces only by freelance..

Thanks for any advice :D

Re: Career decision/Avoiding the pigeon hole

Postby KenoLeon » April 13th, 2017, 12:12 am

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tommyle wrote:boss likes me so much they're renovating a new studio for me.


Not reading too much into the new studio they are building you, after all I think if you have a nice place to work you are more productive, so it is in your employers best interest, 2-3 years presents a decent ROI, (maybe it's tax deductible business expense) plus you are not taking it with you.

tommyle wrote:1) Should I tell him I'm not staying long term?


You can play it 2 ways as I see it, one keep mum and leave when you feel like it, and as long as you abide by your contract you are technically not doing anything wrong, if they really like you so much they'll be glad you leave to experience other things and probably leave the doors open for you to come back.

I also read that you genuinely think they are being nice to you, this is harder to gauge, in my experience some bosses I've had became friends, and as such I felt that their problems became mine, so in this sense I would inform them, hey bob it's so nice that you are thinking of building me a nice studio, but I think I will be leaving in a few years tops, so why don't we make sure it works for the next guy as well and you don't stress the business finances too much, it can obviously backfire if they are not really your friends.

Not sure about the second question, maybe others can chime in.

Best,
-K
Eugenio (Keno) Leon
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"Go where you are celebrated, not merely tolerated"

Re: Career decision/Avoiding the pigeon hole

Postby iab » April 13th, 2017, 7:29 am


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1. No. It is none of his business on how you live your life. He can fire you tomorrow. Giving him 2 weeks notice is more than enough.

2. Design is problem solving, packaging/product/UX/whatever. For me it's the core skill that matters. If your boss likes you so much, you should be able to interface with customers and make your job more than "just" packaging design.

Re: Career decision/Avoiding the pigeon hole

Postby skyarrow » April 13th, 2017, 9:45 am

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I think there are some sound perspectives being offered on this, but I'll add that the biggest thing to remember is that at the end of the day, you are your own business and as such, you need to make decisions from that perspective. I've worked at companies that I know had management that cared for its employees, but when times got back and the budget needed to be scaled back, made the business decision to lay people off. It wasn't personal, it was business. I'd wager the company you currently work for would do the same if it needed to.

Same should go for you - when the time comes, two weeks notice is a perfectly professional and reasonable amount of time to give. If it would make you feel better, when you submit your resignation, offer to stay a little longer in order to help facilitate the transition. If they accept that offer, great. If not, at least you tried.
"See, how it works is, the train leaves and not the station"

Re: Career decision/Avoiding the pigeon hole

Postby yo » April 13th, 2017, 4:40 pm

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iab wrote:1. No. It is none of his business on how you live your life. He can fire you tomorrow. Giving him 2 weeks notice is more than enough.

2. Design is problem solving, packaging/product/UX/whatever. For me it's the core skill that matters. If your boss likes you so much, you should be able to interface with customers and make your job more than "just" packaging design.


Great advice.

Re: Career decision/Avoiding the pigeon hole

Postby tommyle » April 14th, 2017, 8:44 am


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Thank you all for the help! Some really great points that clear up whats been on my mind.


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