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I'm afraid I can't handle my new job

So I started a new job as a cloud engineer with a software developer this week. The position is technically a promotion from my old job as a lead cloud operations engineer, better hours, better pay, less support work, more dev work.

But as soon as I get in, things start going sideways. Meetings are getting scheduled outside of established work hours (I have a small kid I take care of and can only work when he's at daycare (10 hours a day) or after he goes to bed for the night. I've done two 15 minute training sessions with another engineer and that's all the actual job training I've received. I had a meeting yesterday for a project I think they wanted me to take on but it was in a programming language I'm only slightly familiar with, using DevOps tools I have no experience with. Their code is expert level, and it was a bit of a reality check that I'm not as good at scripting as I thought I was. I think they were disappointed that I couldn't pick it up and run with it immediately. It got assigned to another engineer and I'm supposed to sit in and review with him on it next week.

I had a meeting with my boss and he didn't seem concerned, he gave me a login to a training website and recommended some classes for me to take. Maybe I'm misreading the whole situation, I'm a pretty high strung guy and tend to panic quickly. I'm not used to struggling with jobs, over the last 16 years I've been a top performer in every job I've ever had. I talked to my friends and wife about it and they all seem to think I'm overreacting. My main concern is that my old job would take me back in a heartbeat right now at the pay I'm currently making in my new job, but at some point that vacancy will be filled and I won't be able to fall back on that if things don't work out here at my new job. Should I keep trying to make this work? Should I go back to my old job?
 

jonnyp

Member
Panicking doesn't help anything. Take a deep breath, start the training courses. You seem like a smart dude, you'll pick it up. Meetings can be done remotely with Teams now so I see no reason why meetings cannot be done from home after hours.

It's not like it's going to be impossible for a cloud engineer to get a job in the next 1000 years. Relax dude. Learning new things, getting thrown into the deep end, trying new things is how you grow and will make you even more desirable for any future employers.
 
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wondermega

Member
Sounds challenging. You also sound pretty capable given your history and experience, and the pros sound like they outweigh the cons. Give it some time and grow into the role, your new boss sounds like he is willing to give you a little room to do so (which is pretty standard). Don't be too hard on yourself! If it does go awry, you should hopefully have little trouble getting back into another more manageable role somewhere else. However, if it is truly kicking your ass and ruining your life for more than a little period (some weeks) and your boss starts getting cagey, you might be wise to look elsewhere.
 
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Punished Miku

Gold Member
It's going to come down to you deciding what you want to actually do. Do you want to push your limits, take those classes, learn a new skillset and grow into the job through effort and discomfort? Or do you want a comfortable job that pays well? I have a feeling you're smart enough to do either one, so it's a question of you deciding what you want.

If you want to work on the new job, then time to get to work. If not, then I guess you know what to do.
 
The only thing I’d be concerned about if I were you is the out of hours meetings and emergencies. Fuck that.
The rest? Just work at it, enjoy being uncomfortable, you’ll get there. If not, whatever, get another job as you’re a skilled cloud engineer.
 
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PSYGN

Member
Trust that they selected you for a reason and learn the material your boss gave you. If he's not concerned then you shouldn't be - he's the one that would get flack first if you underperformed. It's to be expected that you'll be in "training" for a few weeks/months as you come to grips with their process and the nuances of whatever language they are using.

I think the real problem here is what kind of work-life balance they expect out of you. Something I find is that people with a high degree of expertise in an area don't always have the best work-life balance. They are experts in that field for a reason. So you'll need to gauge if this makes you happy. If this job cuts into your life outside of work then it'll cause not only stress to you but your family. You may earn more today from it but you'll pay that difference in the future with your mental and even physical health.
 
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Rival

Gold Member
They say the grass isn’t always greener. Would you be personally happy with everything else at the old job with the new pay? You must be pretty sharp when it comes to doing the work they hired you for so I’d bet that you’d probably get up to speed pretty quickly with the new language you need to learn.
 

Amory

Member
It sounds like the problem is with them. Too many places hire someone and then just expect the person to...go. Do.

That's not how it works, even for good hires.

My last job I had a similar vibe. I wasn't introduced to anyone outside of my core team, didn't know where anything was, I kept getting pulled into projects midway through so I had no idea what I was doing. It does cause a lot of anxiety. I left after less than a year and found a much better company.
 
Thanks all for your input. I'm going to keep doing my best, if things don't work out, I'll land on my feet doing something else.

As for the meetings scheduled outside my hours, I should clarify the company is on the east coast and I'm currently living on the west coast. I'll try to be flexible and a team player and call into them while on mute so they don't hear my kid freaking out while I try to put clothes on him and get him ready for daycare, if they have a problem with that, they can pay me an extra 40k to hire a nanny because I don't know any daycares in my city that open before 7am, lol.
 

Amory

Member
Thanks all for your input. I'm going to keep doing my best, if things don't work out, I'll land on my feet doing something else.

As for the meetings scheduled outside my hours, I should clarify the company is on the east coast and I'm currently living on the west coast. I'll try to be flexible and a team player and call into them while on mute so they don't hear my kid freaking out while I try to put clothes on him and get him ready for daycare, if they have a problem with that, they can pay me an extra 40k to hire a nanny because I don't know any daycares in my city that open before 7am, lol.
I mean, they hired you knowing you live on the west coast right?

I know in this country we kill ourselves trying to be available at all hours, but wouldn't it be a reasonable request for you to talk to your boss, explain the situation with your child and request that they hold meetings at times that reflect the availability of all attendees?

I manage a global system and know enough not to schedule meetings with people in the UK after, say, noon, because that's 5 PM there and even if they show up they're not going to be happy or productive. It's not a reasonable ask.
 

Patrick S.

Amiga Forever
I'm a super indecisive person who is also extremely nervous about new situations. I'd probably go back to the old job and enjoy the extra money.
 

Patrick S.

Amiga Forever
What kind of job lets you come back with a higher salary knowing you left them?

Leaving a job doesn't mean you part as enemies. Bosses know that people chase growth and change, and if you left on good terms from a position you excelled in, why wouldn't they take you back with open arms?
 

Roxkis_ii

Gold Member
If your boss doesn't mind, then it doesn't matter. You have had 30 minutes of training. Most jobs have at least 2 weeks. I would say do the best you can, while doing as much training as you can. Sometimes you'll surprise yourself with what situations you can thrive in. Good luck.
 

StormCell

Member
Leaving a job doesn't mean you part as enemies. Bosses know that people chase growth and change, and if you left on good terms from a position you excelled in, why wouldn't they take you back with open arms?
This isn't necessarily the case with every boss. One of my previous bosses who was also a friend of mine before he came on board, let me know how he views people on his teams who put in a two week notice. Basically, that view was that they had a reason for looking for another job and once you announce your two week notice he no longer has any reason to be confident in you staying long term even if it ends up that you do stay.

Of course, that's not always the case, but his manner of thinking isn't totally wrong. People who are totally content at their job usually aren't expending the effort to look, apply, and interview elsewhere. So, coming back onto his team would be a no no. Unfortunate, yes. This is the same guy who told me I was doing a great job for him but that I needed leave before my tenure there began to hurt my resume. Sadly, I believe he was right and thankfully I'm at twice the pay I was then because I heeded his advice!
 
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StormCell

Member
So I started a new job as a cloud engineer with a software developer this week. The position is technically a promotion from my old job as a lead cloud operations engineer, better hours, better pay, less support work, more dev work.

But as soon as I get in, things start going sideways. Meetings are getting scheduled outside of established work hours (I have a small kid I take care of and can only work when he's at daycare (10 hours a day) or after he goes to bed for the night. I've done two 15 minute training sessions with another engineer and that's all the actual job training I've received. I had a meeting yesterday for a project I think they wanted me to take on but it was in a programming language I'm only slightly familiar with, using DevOps tools I have no experience with. Their code is expert level, and it was a bit of a reality check that I'm not as good at scripting as I thought I was. I think they were disappointed that I couldn't pick it up and run with it immediately. It got assigned to another engineer and I'm supposed to sit in and review with him on it next week.

I had a meeting with my boss and he didn't seem concerned, he gave me a login to a training website and recommended some classes for me to take. Maybe I'm misreading the whole situation, I'm a pretty high strung guy and tend to panic quickly. I'm not used to struggling with jobs, over the last 16 years I've been a top performer in every job I've ever had. I talked to my friends and wife about it and they all seem to think I'm overreacting. My main concern is that my old job would take me back in a heartbeat right now at the pay I'm currently making in my new job, but at some point that vacancy will be filled and I won't be able to fall back on that if things don't work out here at my new job. Should I keep trying to make this work? Should I go back to my old job?

OP, I can only tell you what I would do as a senior level engineer. First of all, I would look back over my notes on the job description and the job posting to make sure I didn't miss a key detail about the position such as programming languages I'm expected to know. I'm a .NET developer with extensive back-end knowledge who also happens to be proficient in writing web front ends. If I was suddenly given a project that requires Java, I'm not going to meet whatever deadlines they would have for an experience Java developer -- frankly, many senior developers would recommend they hire a Java developer to handle such a project.

I have extensive cloud experience, so I'm a little curious to know what they are possibly expecting of you that would fall outside of your skillset. I picked up Python writing some short and sweet data consumption services that we were running in EKS. I've seen some of the cloud operations engineers writing scripts in Go, which wouldn't be my first choice, obviously, but if I had to I would pick that up in a couple of weeks with some training. Again, I wouldn't be proficient or efficient but I would be capable, I think. Notice, I wouldn't feel worse about myself, because in fact I feel that it proves my skills when I'm able to jump into new languages and begin contributing peer reviewed code within weeks. You really can't or shouldn't ask more than that of anyone.

If these things stress you out, you might verify with your boss that the expectations of the position haven't changed from what you thought they were. What matters most about a job isn't what is thrown at you but whether you have a boss who has your back and will work towards making sure the position can meet you where you are instead of you having to bend to meet the position. (OP, when a new hire doesn't fit the job they were hired for, it looks worse on the boss who did the hiring than on the candidate.) Of course, there is a balance to transitioning to a new role and getting the ropes at a new place. Sometimes jobs also change without the job posting reflecting it. I once saw my boss hire a data analyst and after hiring this person he realized he'd framed the position incorrectly and hired someone with a totally different set of tools than what he was actually looking for. Consequently, it wasn't a good fit at the start, and no amount of coaching up (that I did) ever seemed to satisfy him with this particular hire.

If this, in fact, happens to you (referring to anyone) don't hesitate to use your probation period to find a better fit elsewhere. It's what your boss and the company are hoping you will do.

The point here is to make sure you understand expectations and determine whether your skills and life are able to support meeting those expectations. Sometimes jobs have unreasonable expectations, too, and when you make this realization I would suggest getting out as soon as possible. I've done endless death marches as a developer where it lasted a couple of years, and winning those rat races didn't bring me riches or take me to the promised land. It may have made me the seasoned veteran dev that I am today, but I've no doubt that stress shaved years off of my life, probably...
 
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Do nothing until you get fired. You'll last longer than you will if you worry, stress, panic or try and change the situation you're in. I bet everyone in this thread knows an Arthur.
 

Thaedolus

Gold Member
What kind of job lets you come back with a higher salary knowing you left them?
I’ve had multiple offers to go back to my old company at higher titles/pay than I left with. I’m still on great terms with my former management and several coworkers after spending half a decade with them. It’s not that hard to imagine
 
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n0razi

Member
Make friends with the smelly, nerdy guy in the office that no one invites out to lunch.... have him do all your projects. Problem solved!
 

Dr_Salt

Member
I’ve had multiple offers to go back to my old company at hire titles/pay than I left with. I’m still on great terms with my former management and several coworkers after spending half a decade with them. It’s not that hard to imagine
Well maybe that happens in small companies but my experience working for F500 people are just seen as numbers. All of that "friendship" doesn't matter when they only see people leaving as a waste of resources in having to train someone from scratch.
 

Thaedolus

Gold Member
Well maybe that happens in small companies but my experience working for F500 people are just seen as numbers. All of that "friendship" doesn't matter when they only see people leaving as a waste of resources in having to train someone from scratch.
…I worked at one of the biggest medical device companies in the world, in the top 200 on the F500…
 

isual

Member
small brains saying job isn't for you.

it is better to be over your head and trying to learn the job than in a job where you ain't learning squat. at least in this job you'll be able to see the challenges, and when you do succeed, you'll think in your head, wow i did it. take the red pill son; you're making more money right? that's the whole point of a j.o.b.; you're exchanging your time and skills for $.
 

nush

Gold Member
the worst they can do is fire you.

That's how I looked at it when I bullshitted my way into a job I had no idea about. I was unemployed so I pragmatically thought I'd earn 2-3 months wages until they fire me for not being able to do the job OR I could learn it in 2-3 months. Turns out I learned it and flourished there.
 
I'll admit I was not qualified for the night-shift lead at the dining hall at a small Christian college when I got the job. My qualifications were 3 years at a Publix deli, 2 years as a line cook at my alma mater of USF, and a shit ton of watching Alton Brown.

I feel my immediate supervisor, who spent 15 years learning Italian cooking from an immediate immigrant family in NYC, spent far too much time walking me through the life-hacks in cooking than he should have if I actually had more experience. Within a year I realized running a kitchen isn't within my skillset. I damn sure learned a lot about cooking from my old boss though, if anything I learned shame since the kids didn't have a bunch else to chose from other than my mistake when I fucked up.

Nowadays I don't accept anything but perfection from my cooking. I will be the first to call out my own failures, even to the point of explaining to my friends how I fucked up when they didn't realize it.
 

AJUMP23

Gold Member
If your boss isn't worried, work the hours you establish for yourself and maintain your work life balance. You can tell people scheduling the meeting you are not available. They put you there because they trust you, prove to them that they can trust you on the schedule you set.
 

JeTmAn81

Member
I'm a dev and in my experience most companies don't expect you to make a significant impact even within the first few months on the job. Ramping up takes time. So if your employer doesn't seem worried about it, you shouldn't be either.
 
It depends, are you ready to grind again? You lost that, and need to get that back. I'm sure the past you would rise to this challenge, but do you want to be the old you until you get comfortable again? That's a serious question. Do you? What do you want at a base level? If there is a reward, do you want to be challenged again (and you won't be forever).

If you don't mind being challenged then put in, because you can learn the stuff.
 
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Fear of the unknown in new jobs is entirely normal. Nearly everyone gets it. You don’t know processes, people, and the work is a stretch. This is all normal and it should even be expected. If it didn’t happen you wouldn’t grow as an employee or as a person.

Give it 6-9 months before judging it.
 

Dr Bass

Member
What is it about the code that comes across as "expert level" to you, in a way that's over your head? What's the language? If I can be of assistance you are always welcome to DM me.
 
No one starts a job expecting to know how to do things at "100%", everything takes time. When I got into my new job, I was scared, frustrated, angry, and confused. After a while I understood how things worked and nothing much after that. The same happen when I learned game development "currently as a hobby", but hope to make a living out of it in the future.

While learning game development I was again In the same situation, scared, frustrated, angry, and confused. After I published my first game, I feel great, but still need to improve, like any other job/career, everything takes time.
 

DryvBy

Member
So I started a new job as a cloud engineer with a software developer this week. The position is technically a promotion from my old job as a lead cloud operations engineer, better hours, better pay, less support work, more dev work.

But as soon as I get in, things start going sideways. Meetings are getting scheduled outside of established work hours (I have a small kid I take care of and can only work when he's at daycare (10 hours a day) or after he goes to bed for the night. I've done two 15 minute training sessions with another engineer and that's all the actual job training I've received. I had a meeting yesterday for a project I think they wanted me to take on but it was in a programming language I'm only slightly familiar with, using DevOps tools I have no experience with. Their code is expert level, and it was a bit of a reality check that I'm not as good at scripting as I thought I was. I think they were disappointed that I couldn't pick it up and run with it immediately. It got assigned to another engineer and I'm supposed to sit in and review with him on it next week.

I had a meeting with my boss and he didn't seem concerned, he gave me a login to a training website and recommended some classes for me to take. Maybe I'm misreading the whole situation, I'm a pretty high strung guy and tend to panic quickly. I'm not used to struggling with jobs, over the last 16 years I've been a top performer in every job I've ever had. I talked to my friends and wife about it and they all seem to think I'm overreacting. My main concern is that my old job would take me back in a heartbeat right now at the pay I'm currently making in my new job, but at some point that vacancy will be filled and I won't be able to fall back on that if things don't work out here at my new job. Should I keep trying to make this work? Should I go back to my old job?

2nd post nailed it. Fake it until you make it. They hired you, they'll make it work. I just took a promotion and I have no idea what I'm doing at work. Not my fault they fell for my cunning charisma.
 

Northeastmonk

Gold Member
The experience you’ll gain will last you probably until retirement if you stick with it. I was spinning my wheels at my last job. The job I currently have had me doing things I’ve never done before. The thing is. I’ve stuck with it and now I have had recruiters contacting me about escalation jobs in the IT field. I even interviewed for an IT position managing a law firm. I don’t jump the gun because that requires a lot of working hours. I don’t honestly want to seek out that much responsibility.

Not knowing something is the start of learning something. Don’t worry about making mistakes. My worst mistakes taught me how to be a better tech.

Don’t let the lack of knowledge make you quit because like I said, you’re going to be golden once you learn the stuff.
 

bitbydeath

Member
Thanks all for your input. I'm going to keep doing my best, if things don't work out, I'll land on my feet doing something else.

As for the meetings scheduled outside my hours, I should clarify the company is on the east coast and I'm currently living on the west coast. I'll try to be flexible and a team player and call into them while on mute so they don't hear my kid freaking out while I try to put clothes on him and get him ready for daycare, if they have a problem with that, they can pay me an extra 40k to hire a nanny because I don't know any daycares in my city that open before 7am, lol.
Good pair of headphones will fix that.
 
After floating around a few of the accounts amongst my company, as a trucker this idea of "fake it until you make it" might fuck you over. If I wasn't as skilled at determining at a glance whether I can make a turn or not I would have definitely made contact with a fixed object.

As a semi truck driver me being bad-ass at my job is my ability to take an glance at a potential close quarter situation, and making the executive decision whether to attempt it or try to change the situation.

Brochachos, if a trucker ever comes up to you to ask you to move your car in a parking lot, fucking move your car. The driver is trying not to wreck your shit, and most drivers are backed up by lawyers you can't afford.
 

DAHGAMING

Member
You cant buy or learn experiance, you just have to stick at it, take your time, make mistakes and learn from them. It seems your boss is half decent aswell and knows you will be an asset, keep at it, try not to worry and in time it will click for you.
 

MrMephistoX

Member
The way to deal with is don’t be afraid of declining meetings at unreasonable hours and suggesting new times. If the meetings are late because it’s w an international team I usually get around that by sharing the burden if it’s a recurring thing I.e maybe this weeks meeting they stay late or wake up early so it’s a friendly time for your country and the next meeting you bite the bullet and do it after your kid is in bed.
 

K' Dash

Member
You sound like a capable engineer my dude.

A new position in the tech fields can be overwhelming at times, I would suggest you humbly learn whatever you can from your peers or anyone familiar with the kind of projects you'll be taking on, a mentor of sorts.

You'll be up and running in no time.

Also, don't be afraid to decline after hours meetings, your family time is more valuable than anything, I'd suggest to make that clear through actions.

You can do it.
 
In my experience, as you progress into higher paying positions, honestly less is expected of you. You make fewer decisions and do less work, but you are expected to be correct more often. So don't stress if you feel like you aren't contributing enough compared to previous jobs, just make sure your work is flawless and learn as you go. Slow and right is much better than fast and anything.

Feel free to DM me if you want more specifics as I work in a very similar field at a pretty large tech company, and have had similar imposter syndrome feelings.

Edit: Also it is very likely that your work provides EAD assistance. Several free meetings with a counselor at no charge to you. Check out your benefits package to see if that is an option.
 
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I think you will do fine, being stressed and worried just shows that you care about quality of your work and your performance.

Every new job I've had nightmares, terrible doubts if I can learn new launguages, can I perform at the level they expect.

Somehow in the end it all went fine, better then fine. Challenging yourself is good, this is how you grow...
 

CAPSOL

Member
My advise is just go with the flow and dont be too hard on yourself. Trust in your experience and you're ability to adapt and you'll rise out of this.
 
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