Ask Amanda:

How do I evaluate two completely different offers?

Question:
I’m a senior executive and left my previous position because it had become a role I did not want. Now I’m in the enviable position of having two offers—same money, etc—but completely different roles. One role is being created, the other already exists. I like different things about each and am not sure how to sort out my options. Any ideas?  A.M., New York, NY

Answer:
Congratulations! It’s rare that the timing works out so that you have two offers concurrently, especially at a senior level. This situation differs from other issues that require strategic thinking because it also involves emotional factors. It’s easier to start evaluating using less subjective aspects of the issue before you add in your feelings.

Which role will get you closer to your long-term goal? If you’re not sure what your long-term goal is, think about what you see yourself doing a few roles down the road. Even if you can’t name the role, you can probably identify the type of impact or situation you want, e.g., working globally, running a standalone division, etc. What are the gaps between what you do now and what you think you need to know for your future roles? What are those skills? It’s important to keep track of these because regardless of which job you take, looking at your list will let you know when it’s time to move on.

Since you left a situation that wasn’t working, check to make sure that it’s not affecting your thinking. For instance, if you left because you didn’t have autonomy and one of these new roles appears to have autotomy aplenty, you might give it more weight than it deserves.

Another consideration is the challenge that comes along with creating a role versus stepping into a role someone else has held. Depending upon how you define risk, either one could look risky. You might see creating a new role as risky because you’re introducing change into an organization and will have to sell your benefit consistently. Or you could see it as less risky because there is no benchmark and you can tailor the position to play to your strengths, assuming it meets business needs.

How you see the opportunity will affect how you experience the job. If you are still torn between the two offers after you’ve evaluated the rational attributes and made sure that you aren’t reacting to your most recent situation, then go with what you think is the least risky option. If you perceive the risk level as high, you will likely put additional pressure on yourself and that could easily get in the way of having a good experience. Good luck!

If you're wondering why corporations act as they do or would like advice on how to navigate the corporate landscape, please Ask Amanda and submit your question here.

You are welcome to reprint this article as long as you include the following in its entirety: Reprinted from “Our Corporate Life®,” a biweekly ezine featuring practical tips and tools for navigating the corporate world. Copyright © MMXIX Amanda Mitchell and Our Corporate Life LLC All Rights Reserved. Subscribe at www.ourcorporatelife.com/subscribe

Amanda Mitchell is an executive coach and strategist specializing in helping senior executives deal with disruptive drama within their teams. An advertising agency veteran, she experienced first-hand the business implications of corporate drama both with her Fortune 500 clients and within the Manhattan ad agency she led. She founded Our Corporate Life (www.ourcorporatelife.com) to help executives solve the problems no one wants to deal with. She has been published in Bloomberg Businessweek, and quoted in Fast Company, CNBC.com, and Monster.com. She lives in New Jersey with her family.

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Taking Control of Your Career® Bootcamp Content Overview

Our Bootcamp is designed to get you back to feeling like yourself fast. To avoid overwhelm, we cover critical topics sequentially so you can make small changes quickly and experience immediate results.

1. New Beginnings

We start by creating a clear picture of your desired outcome and showing how feeling stuck can benefit you. You’ll also learn how to increase your physical and mental energy and a quick (less than 5 minutes!), easy way to improve your mood.

2. Setting Yourself Up For Success

It’s easier to succeed when your environment completely supports you. You’ll learn how to easily analyze yours and bring it into alignment. We’ll also cover techniques for viewing your work situation in a neutral, productive way–allowing you to move within it effortlessly.

3. Values & Standards

Values impact your behaviors, decisions, relationships and direction in life. Yet your values are often not aligned with your workplace. Standards are what we honor because we believe they will lead us to our goals. Logically you’d think high standards would result in a superior result but just the opposite often occurs. In this session we’ll cover how to maintain your standards when they’re not shared and how to stay true to yourself without making it an issue for others.

4. How Your Best Intentions Work Against You

If you’re like most achievers, you welcome and thrive on responsibility. Sometimes, however, your life can feel like one long “to do” list leaving little time to figure out what is working – or not – in your life. We’ll cover how to retrain your teammates, how to redefine your role and the concept of “responsibility without authority” – having one without the other makes success impossible.

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Understanding how personal beliefs drive behavior is critical to freeing you from feeling trapped. This is a deeply personal and important aspect necessary to move into action. You’ll learn how to uncover the core belief that is out of alignment and the 5 step process you can use to replace it.

6. Who is in Control of Your Life?

Control is like catnip to high achievers – we all want it. But surprisingly few exercise control in the one area where they actually have it. This cycle of relentlessly trying to get control over an uncontrollable situation is exhausting and self–defeating. Resetting expectations so you can focus on fulfilling activities will provide the energy you need to regain your perspective and take action.

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