Negotiating to get a direct report?

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mad_pear
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Negotiating to get a direct report?

Post by mad_pear » Thu Feb 14, 2019 11:27 pm

Hi all,

I am applying for a "management" position in another company that is part of a leadership team where all the other team members will have direct reports. They would like me to start as an individual contributor with the potential to build out a team, although when/if that would happen is still a very open question. A colleague of mine suggested that I insist on getting one direct report as part of my negotiation and hiring strategy. I hadn't considered that possibility, but it would make the position much more appealing (and build trust that they are actually planning on building this into a management role). Is negotiating for a direct report a normal situation? Any thoughts on how I handle this as I strongly want to make the jump to management?

Thank you.

mattyslice
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Re: Negotiating to get a direct report?

Post by mattyslice » Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:22 am

Great question...a few candid answers from my POV as a hiring manager.

The Good - Full employment economy (can ask for more money/perks when moving jobs), now is the time to negotiate before you sign on the dotted line, I would ask the question during the interview process but not make the demand until they have extended you an offer.

Reality - they probably only budgeted for one FTE, I assume you are unproven as a manager so they want to wait and see, and are probably making this a manager/supervisor title to lure someone away to take the job.

I am doing that just now. Hiring for a manager title, no direct reports, senior analyst pay but am luring away senior analysts who want the title change.

My two cents...take the job if you are getting more pay, better title, and feel/are stuck in your current role.

Nowizard
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Re: Negotiating to get a direct report?

Post by Nowizard » Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:31 am

Having direct reports is one factor in the hierarchy of job titles and pay. Doesn't hurt to try to negotiate, but it may be that allowing this would result in assigning you to a higher employment title and pay than the advertised job allows.

Tim

il0kin
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Re: Negotiating to get a direct report?

Post by il0kin » Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:40 am

Maybe a stupid question from a staff-level analyst... but what exactly makes a position a management position if there are no people to manage? Certainly, titles like Program Manager or Project Manager involve managing “things” which have people allocated to the “thing” but generally those people actually report to other actual managers.

StandingRock
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Re: Negotiating to get a direct report?

Post by StandingRock » Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:47 am

il0kin wrote:
Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:40 am
Maybe a stupid question from a staff-level analyst... but what exactly makes a position a management position if there are no people to manage? Certainly, titles like Program Manager or Project Manager involve managing “things” which have people allocated to the “thing” but generally those people actually report to other actual managers.
Probably just a title. I don't know what field he is in, but I have met VPs, Directors, Senior Managers and Managers in IT that don't have any direct reports at all. In the big banks especially they bring in senior developers as VPs due to the pay scale. "Architect" doesn't mean much either depending on the situation. I have worked with old mainframe programmers that sit in a corner and monitor file transfers and they are "Solution Architect" or something like that.

il0kin
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Re: Negotiating to get a direct report?

Post by il0kin » Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:51 am

StandingRock wrote:
Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:47 am
il0kin wrote:
Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:40 am
Maybe a stupid question from a staff-level analyst... but what exactly makes a position a management position if there are no people to manage? Certainly, titles like Program Manager or Project Manager involve managing “things” which have people allocated to the “thing” but generally those people actually report to other actual managers.
Probably just a title. I don't know what field he is in, but I have met VPs, Directors, Senior Managers and Managers in IT that don't have any direct reports at all. In the big banks especially they bring in senior developers as VPs due to the pay scale. "Architect" doesn't mean much either depending on the situation. I have worked with old mainframe programmers that sit in a corner and monitor file transfers and they are "Solution Architect" or something like that.
That's kind of what I was thinking. I know someone who is an "Associate Vice President" at a big bank... but has no direct reports. So, just an analyst who they wanted to retain due to good performance and competency, so they get a 10k pay bump and an "AVP" title. Not a manager or any kind of Vice President in any sense of the word. All they manage is the projects they are assigned by actual management.

OP - I am asking not to degrade your possible position, but more so as a warning that this "management" position might not be what you think it is.

dknightd
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Re: Negotiating to get a direct report?

Post by dknightd » Fri Feb 15, 2019 10:04 am

I would be careful about demanding, or even negotiating for, a "direct report."
They might find you somebody that nobody else really wants.
Probably better to be allowed to build your own team when the time comes . . .
If you value a bird in the hand, pay off the loan. If you are willing to risk getting two birds (or none) from the market, invest the funds.

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8foot7
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Re: Negotiating to get a direct report?

Post by 8foot7 » Fri Feb 15, 2019 10:13 am

I would enjoy the title and pay jump without a direct as long as you can.

stan1
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Re: Negotiating to get a direct report?

Post by stan1 » Fri Feb 15, 2019 10:15 am

So much depends but in general if I was establishing a new business area or managing a new process I'd prefer to go in, set it up how I wanted, and then hire the people with the skills and behaviors I wanted to make it work.

There are always exceptions when the specifics are discussed. For example if the position involves a lot of data entry having someone at a lower pay scale would make sense. In this situation I'd present it to my future employer as an efficiency as well as showing you understand what needs to be done.

StandingRock
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Re: Negotiating to get a direct report?

Post by StandingRock » Fri Feb 15, 2019 10:17 am

dknightd wrote:
Fri Feb 15, 2019 10:04 am
I would be careful about demanding, or even negotiating for, a "direct report."
They might find you somebody that nobody else really wants.
Probably better to be allowed to build your own team when the time comes . . .
OP these negotiations are usually internal budget battles that happen well after joining the organization.

Is your title actually "Manager" of something? Have you been given a clear expectations of duties and responsibilities in this role? Is it a smaller company that is growing and wants someone that will grow into that position?

dbr
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Re: Negotiating to get a direct report?

Post by dbr » Fri Feb 15, 2019 10:43 am

This may be a question of matching career goals with opportunities. It seems to me that if you want to manage people and eventually manage an organization, you would start with a position where there are people to manage. That would mean more than one report, not just a report. If your objective is higher status doing a job that is not really a management job, then that is different. I sense that this opportunity is not a match to your goals if managing people is your goal.

People are also correct about managing things rather than people. In my career I managed lots of projects but never had any reports in the human resources sense of the word.

cherijoh
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Re: Negotiating to get a direct report?

Post by cherijoh » Fri Feb 15, 2019 10:54 am

il0kin wrote:
Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:51 am
StandingRock wrote:
Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:47 am
il0kin wrote:
Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:40 am
Maybe a stupid question from a staff-level analyst... but what exactly makes a position a management position if there are no people to manage? Certainly, titles like Program Manager or Project Manager involve managing “things” which have people allocated to the “thing” but generally those people actually report to other actual managers.
Probably just a title. I don't know what field he is in, but I have met VPs, Directors, Senior Managers and Managers in IT that don't have any direct reports at all. In the big banks especially they bring in senior developers as VPs due to the pay scale. "Architect" doesn't mean much either depending on the situation. I have worked with old mainframe programmers that sit in a corner and monitor file transfers and they are "Solution Architect" or something like that.
That's kind of what I was thinking. I know someone who is an "Associate Vice President" at a big bank... but has no direct reports. So, just an analyst who they wanted to retain due to good performance and competency, so they get a 10k pay bump and an "AVP" title. Not a manager or any kind of Vice President in any sense of the word. All they manage is the projects they are assigned by actual management.

OP - I am asking not to degrade your possible position, but more so as a warning that this "management" position might not be what you think it is.
I worked for a big bank in the latter part of my career. They are very free with the VP title - as well as manager titles. I started as an AVP and was promoted to VP after a couple of years. There were individual contributors who were Senior VPs. Only Executive VPs were what would be considered a VP anywhere else besides a bank. :wink:

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8foot7
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Re: Negotiating to get a direct report?

Post by 8foot7 » Fri Feb 15, 2019 12:03 pm

cherijoh wrote:
Fri Feb 15, 2019 10:54 am
il0kin wrote:
Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:51 am
StandingRock wrote:
Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:47 am
il0kin wrote:
Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:40 am
Maybe a stupid question from a staff-level analyst... but what exactly makes a position a management position if there are no people to manage? Certainly, titles like Program Manager or Project Manager involve managing “things” which have people allocated to the “thing” but generally those people actually report to other actual managers.
Probably just a title. I don't know what field he is in, but I have met VPs, Directors, Senior Managers and Managers in IT that don't have any direct reports at all. In the big banks especially they bring in senior developers as VPs due to the pay scale. "Architect" doesn't mean much either depending on the situation. I have worked with old mainframe programmers that sit in a corner and monitor file transfers and they are "Solution Architect" or something like that.
That's kind of what I was thinking. I know someone who is an "Associate Vice President" at a big bank... but has no direct reports. So, just an analyst who they wanted to retain due to good performance and competency, so they get a 10k pay bump and an "AVP" title. Not a manager or any kind of Vice President in any sense of the word. All they manage is the projects they are assigned by actual management.

OP - I am asking not to degrade your possible position, but more so as a warning that this "management" position might not be what you think it is.
I worked for a big bank in the latter part of my career. They are very free with the VP title - as well as manager titles. I started as an AVP and was promoted to VP after a couple of years. There were individual contributors who were Senior VPs. Only Executive VPs were what would be considered a VP anywhere else besides a bank. :wink:
+1. My wife worked at a mega bank and an AVP could be making as little as 75k. Not that that’s a small amount of money but in any other company an AVP’s going to be making real close to, if not over, six figures.

dbr
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Re: Negotiating to get a direct report?

Post by dbr » Fri Feb 15, 2019 12:13 pm

You could ask them what the career path for you is intended to look like and what the requirements are that have to be met to put you where you want to be. Have they explained how it comes about that there is an opening for a manager and nobody to manage? I don't understand the concept of being an "individual contributor" on a "leadership" team. What exactly are you supposed to "contribute"? Are you being given a business and authority to hire people to work for you?

Thegame14
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Re: Negotiating to get a direct report?

Post by Thegame14 » Fri Feb 15, 2019 12:14 pm

get everything in writing, I have changed jobs too many times, and each time something that was important was promised verbally and not in writing and then was changed, ie bonuses, tuition reimbursement, hours, weekends, etc

badger42
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Re: Negotiating to get a direct report?

Post by badger42 » Fri Feb 15, 2019 12:32 pm

In my industry, insisting on a people manager role right out of the gate is a red flag.

Get hired as an IC, prove yourself, then take the opportunity to build a team if it's the right thing for the org.

Edit: We also have IC roles up to Sr Director and VP equivalent, with no direct reports. (think "Principal Engineer")
Last edited by badger42 on Fri Feb 15, 2019 1:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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samsoes
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Re: Negotiating to get a direct report?

Post by samsoes » Fri Feb 15, 2019 1:27 pm

dknightd wrote:
Fri Feb 15, 2019 10:04 am
I would be careful about demanding, or even negotiating for, a "direct report."
They might find you somebody that nobody else really wants.
Probably better to be allowed to build your own team when the time comes . . .
Agreed.

"Be careful what you wish for. You might just get it." :oops:
"Happiness Is Not My Companion" - Gen. Gouverneur K. Warren. | (Avatar is the statue of Gen. Warren atop Little Round Top @ Gettysburg National Military Park.)

StandingRock
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Re: Negotiating to get a direct report?

Post by StandingRock » Fri Feb 15, 2019 1:49 pm

dbr wrote:
Fri Feb 15, 2019 12:13 pm
You could ask them what the career path for you is intended to look like and what the requirements are that have to be met to put you where you want to be. Have they explained how it comes about that there is an opening for a manager and nobody to manage? I don't understand the concept of being an "individual contributor" on a "leadership" team. What exactly are you supposed to "contribute"? Are you being given a business and authority to hire people to work for you?
Given the limited information, I would surmise that there is POTENTIAL for a "people manager" job here. Maybe it's a new department or project where they want someone to come in and set things up and get organized, and then ramp up from there. I have seen those situations before.

DarkHelmetII
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Re: Negotiating to get a direct report?

Post by DarkHelmetII » Fri Feb 15, 2019 4:07 pm

8foot7 wrote:
Fri Feb 15, 2019 10:13 am
I would enjoy the title and pay jump without a direct as long as you can.
This, plus the fact that your direct report could easily be taken away for a variety of reasons.

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