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I'm a front-end engineer and have been in the field for a little over 4 years. I feel like I am stuck at my current position, with no room for growth.

Currently, I am a senior front end developer on a small team in a relatively small tech company. I have another senior developer on my team that I find hard to respect because he takes credit for other people's work. For example, if we are discussing / brainstorming ideas he will bring those up to managers as if he had the idea himself.

When I started, we had no design process or plans to gain customer feedback. Having been in a few roles in the past where I had client-facing meetings, I know the value of getting good feedback and iterative design. I have successfully instrumented a pattern lab and design library to help our team prototype so that we can get better feedback during the design phase before it gets implemented. This has been really successful in both developer time and also praised by the business side. The problem is that I don't really feel valued at all for these contributions.

I also have a belittling/jokey manager. For example, recently he was doing some card tricks and was telling me something along the lines of "Well, [name] you KNOW magic ISNT real haha". I don't know why he would even joke like that, and it probably upset me a bit more than it should. But in combination with my output (JIRA pts + tickets to back it up) and process improvements that has improved the entire organization I am really feeling fed up because I don't feel valued.

  • I think you're right, but I am hoping to get feedback because maybe there's a way to salvage / get credit for work that I've done if I present my ideas in a better way? Would you recommend bringing up any of these thoughts with manager/trusted colleagues in a refined way? – throwaway239202392023 Jun 14 at 23:40
  • I'm not really sure, because in the past it seemed like we had a good relationship. He has praised me in the past and I received a good raise last year. I'm sure that I am doing a great job at the company, so I don't know what could be triggering this behavior. – throwaway239202392023 Jun 14 at 23:45
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So, the first thing to do is reality-test your belief about not being valued.

You were given a raise which was apparently significant enough to be noteworthy, and your employer has, by your own admission, adopted a number of process improvements which you also claim benefited the entire organization.

There's a term for that and it isn't "unvalued". How valued you are may be a topic of discussion, but money talks -- they gave you more money, they value you.

The next thing to look at is your workplace experience, because it reads like someone without a lot of workplace experience, or experience dealing with adult co-workers. The comment about the "belittling" magician is interesting, because I wouldn't think of anything in that anecdote as "belittling". That's how work is -- I have co-workers who are going to be very upset if my wear my Yankee's jersey to work on a Brewer's game day and then I'm going to say "Hey, take me to a game". We spend so much time at "work" that we can't just shut our mouths and never bring anything of our personality there.

Finally, the matter of getting credit.

You got a raise, they implemented your process changes, but you don't like how the senior developer is presenting your technical ideas. Yes, you can get "stuck" if you aren't getting all the credit you deserve, but there are easy fixes for that -- talk your ideas up. When I'm in a meeting, I don't sprinkle the names of everyone I talk to. I save that for when I'm meeting with managers and leads.

If the person is bright and promising, I'll say "so-and-so has had some great ideas -- we need to keep / promote / give more money to [insert name here]." But I have no time in a meeting to heap praise on the team.

There are ways to ensure you get recognition. Some of them are a little passive / aggressive. Some are just sneaky. You'll find out if the more-senior developer is taking credit from you for the wrong reasons pretty quickly.

"[More Senior Dude's Name], I want to thank you for presenting my ideas. I'm glad everyone liked them, and I just wanted to say thank-you."

If you get a negative response, you need a new job. But not until you've gotten that negative response.

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I'm a front-end engineer and have been in the field for a little over 4 years. I feel like I am stuck at my current position, with no room for growth.

...The problem is that I don't really feel valued at all for these contributions.

...I also have a belittling/jokey manager.

...I am really feeling fed up because I don't feel valued.

There's no easy way to change the character of your coworkers and manager. If you feel this strongly about your situation, it might be time for a change.

If you are in a large enough company, you might request a transfer to another manager's organization.

If not, you might want to start looking for a new job elsewhere.

recently he was doing some card tricks and was telling me something along the lines of "Well, [name] you KNOW magic ISNT real haha". I don't know why he would even joke like that, and it probably upset me a bit more than it should.

That sounds like typical magician's patter to me, which shouldn't be upsetting at all. But you were there, so you know the tone and could perhaps guess the intent.

  • Thanks Joe, I really do appreciate your help. Going to go with my gut and polish up my resume. – throwaway239202392023 Jun 14 at 23:49
  • Personally, I don't like stage magician patter. I deal with that by not going to magic shows. I can imagine it getting annoying if it shows up in the workplace. – Patricia Shanahan Jun 15 at 16:30

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