To try to sum up my predicament as succinctly as I can-- I am attempting to transition into Digital Marketing from Research Analytics and have found an opening with a company that I would love to work for/grow with. We'll call it 'Company A'.

'Company A' has an opening for a Contract position, but it is an unrelated role of what I hope to transition into-- Traffic/Campaign Implementation Associate.

The opening seems to be for early entry level associates (desc. mentions recent grads, while I am close to becoming a Senior level Analyst in my current role).

Don't want to look too far ahead with a hypothetical situation, but if I were to apply to unrelated role with 'Company A', and succeed in attaining the position, would it be a lateral move or even a step back (not that a step back is necessarily bad, if it leads to huge steps forward later on).

The main risk is that it is a contract role. It is also unrelated to Digital Marketing. If I were to hope to get exposure with the company during my tenure, perform at an outstanding level, and possibly make connections with associates within Performance Marketing, there would still be no guarantee that an offer is extended after the contract is completed.

Then again, without any true, relevant experience, it is difficult to get noticed, let alone snag a job at 'Company A'. The company is one of the most popular organizations in tech, currently.

So, the logic is if I could land an unrelated role, any exposure is good exposure, right?

The predicament lies in playing it safe and finding a role within Digital Marketing at another company instead. A company that I feel I have a good shot at attaining a position at, let's call it 'Company Z'. And with that role I can learn, get much experience, and become more marketable in the given field later on.

Thoughts please?

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last year

Hey man!

Great post, and this is definitely a tricky spot. Here are my thoughts:

If I were to apply to unrelated role with 'Company A', and succeed in attaining the position, would it be a lateral move or even a step back (not that a step back is necessarily bad, if it leads to huge steps forward later on).

Based on the job description you included, it sounds like this is at least a lateral move but very likely a career pivot, which would probably be a step back. As a Sr. Analyst you've gained a ton of experience in your field--and likely a healthy salary--which you'd be leaving that behind. I would only advise making a career pivot like this if you're certain it sets you up for success either because it's a job in Digital Marketing (which you want), or the job will provide you the experience necessary so that you can make the transition to Digital Marketing in the very near future. By very near, I mean like less than 2 years because I think you're really itching to start a career in digital marketing.

However, based on what you've written, I would not advise you to go down this route because there is so much risk involved. Like you mentioned, it's a contract position so no full time offer is guaranteed. Assuming you get the full time offer, it's in a role that you're not passion about, but you're hoping the company/management will allow you to make the move. However, if the company does not allow you to transition to digital marketing, you're stuck in the same position you're in now, and you've wasted the length of the contract + the time you've been waiting for the company to tell you they won't let you pivot.

If I were to hope to get exposure with the company during my tenure, perform at an outstanding level, and possibly make connections with associates within Performance Marketing, there would still be no guarantee that an offer is extended after the contract is completed.

As mentioned above, there's so many hopes, ifs, and maybes in the above scenario that it wouldn't make me comfortable to advise you to make this pivot. Ultimately, I think you're better off holding on to your current job and continue to apply at digital marketing jobs. It might take you a while to land the digital marketing position that will allow you to break into this field, but you only need it to happen once for you to get started. By taking this contract position, you risk delaying your opportunity to get started, and wasted time is poison to your career growth.

Reply back if you have any other questions!

last year

I agree with the other comments; in my opinion you should focus on gaining exposure and experience in the type of role that would interest you instead of shooting for whatever random role at a "dream company". Once you have demonstrated skill and competency in the field you like you'll have the background and resume to apply for the type of job you want at the dream company. If you take a random role it might actually spoil your chances of getting the job you want there in the future.

I know some people that have taken contract positions, but it's usually for the exact type of role they would want to be in, and like you said, no guarantee that you'll get an offer and at that point your chances of getting another role at the same company are slim.

Hope that helps!

last year

It really does help, thank you for that Emily!

I was blinded by the company/brand name that I lost sight of the true goal. So I really appreciate the input; you and everyone else have helped me dodge a critical career misstep!

last year

Contract jobs are beneficial for the company offering them and are often not beneficial for a person looking to make a career move. Not all exposure is good exposure. Plot a course to get an entry level position in the area of your dreams and work towards that. Once you get into the opening role of your preferred career path, the exposure is invaluable and through solid performance you should have a better opportunity to move quickly. Plan your career in 14 month segments. Every 14 months, what should you be doing, where and what is the plan.

last year

I am finding out that not all exposure is good exposure, after all. Thank you for this!

last year

Chiming in. I know a friend who ended up making this same move for the same reasons. Dream company. No open roles. Contract job in a different department. She ended up landing the contract job and she's hating life right now. She doesn't have exposure and has been unable to secure time with the people in the company who she would ultimately need to connect with in order to move into a full-time marketing role; a role she does want. And as a contractor, they haven't been very inclusive by nature of the gig - she hasn't been welcomed to partake in company events where she could get a deeper hook into the culture or meet people.

If this company is your dream company, rather than take the contract job, try to identify who you need to build a relationship with so when a role does open up, you're top of mind. Ask for an informational meeting - I love it when people ask me for those! It shows you care about the conpany and the role and there isn't the pressure of an interview on the table.

Just some thoughts!

last year

Thank you for chiming in with this super insightful, real-life example, Michelle! Sorry to hear that your friend is currently in this type of situation. With this post it has solidified my decision even more; I will not apply, trying to chase my dream job through this path.

But I will most certainly use your suggestion of requesting an informational meeting in the future! This will be saved for reference and it will most certainly come in handy when that time comes.

Also, I just read through your post that Chris just linked me to. Superb advice and helpful on so many levels.

Really appreciate the help and insight all-- I'm lovin' huttle!

last year

Thanks for the major input Chris! Definitely the same conclusion that I ended up with myself. Just wanted to see if there was another way of looking at the issue, but you addressed all points that I had concerns about.

So yeah thanks for laying it out for me with your own way of framing it. I really don't have much room for error at this point of my career so a couple of 'empty' years stagnating would not be wise on my part, well put. Got caught up in seeing the opening for the dream company that I overlooked the reality that it wouldn't actually be my dream job. Essentially nullifying the purpose of my career transition.

Really appreciate this man!

last year

"Got caught up in seeing the opening for the dream company"

I was in a similar situation when I was first starting out. I was debating joining one of the top two comic book publishers or an entry-level marketing job. My thought was that I could join the comic book publisher and make my way over to editing, but I realized that I wouldn't be learning anything at the comic company. On the other hand, a job in marketing would unlock a completely new world for me, and I would be able to learn immediately.

Though the allure of "dream" companies is often exciting, the bigger question to always ask is "will I have the opportunity to learn as much as possible if I go down this path?" If not, don't go down the path. You should always prioritize learning opportunities above all else. Michelle Masek provides a more in-depth response about the importance of learning in this post: http://huttle.co/posts/XFM2zSbh3qqAgP9Po. Definitely check it out!

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