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I have been working at my company as a developer/engineer for about a year now, and over that time I have developed skills in mobile development while working on a project for this position.

Recently, I was contacted by someone else within the company asking if I wanted to transfer positions to a full-time mobile developer role, which would come with a promotion in rank and salary, though more specific information wasn't available.

The thing is, I'm not entirely sure if I want to start on that career path, as, from what I've seen within my company (which is not a software company), developers don't make it into management very often; they more often become internal (though well-paid) consultants.

I can certainly meet with other managers concerning to gather more details about this possible transfer, but here are my questions:

  1. How should I approach following up with cautious interest about this new position without giving the current team I'm on the wrong feeling that I'm looking to jump ship?
  2. At what point should I discuss this situation with my current manager (who will most definitely want to keep me on my current team)?
  3. If I find the potential transfer and new career path unsuitable, how do I turn them down if I've sought a lot of details and interest about the position?

Thanks!

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First congratulations, some one who is not your manager saw your work and wants you enough to offer you a position.

To answer your questions:

  1. Ask the manager any questions you want to find out more about the position. Tell your current team the truth if asked, you were offered a position with better pay and wanted to find out if the better pay was worth the change in responsibilities. This is a decision about your career and unless they also wanted the position I think most would be happy for you.

  2. You should bring your current manager in when you feel its necessary. If you are close to a regular performance review I would bring it up as a positive and you may receive a counter offer from your current department to keep you around. Overall your boss should realize this is business but may get a little upset at the manager who is trying to bring you to their team.

  3. You should treat this new transfer as if it were a completely new position. Get all the details about the position. If it is not a good fit for you, let them know honestly that you would prefer to stay in your current position. This should not hurt you in any way since the manager came to you out of the blue with this position. He probably has an opening and thinks you would be a good fit and since you are internal would not have to spend his time trying to find a new hire. A new hire has several time issues you may not have, his time finding a candidate and then getting the candidate up to speed on any systems your current role and the new role may have in common.

Over all if you are professional and up front, even if you take some time to meet with the manager who gave you the offer, and decide the position would not be a good fit there should be no bad blood. It may also make you more valuable to your current manager as you will not jump ship just for more money.

  • Informing the team before the manager will be awkward when the team informs the manager, possibly unintentionally. – Eric Feb 28 '15 at 7:33
  • @Eric For point number 1 I would tend to include the direct manager as part of the team. With out that understanding I can see where your comment would make sense. – RubberChickenLeader Mar 2 '15 at 15:06

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