I'm working my first job right out of college and few months ago I started with Position Title A which was then changed so many times in the past six months that I've lost the count.

Whenever I go to talk about this matter with my boss, she tells me to sort it with her boss. My boss's boss (who was my direct supervisor when I was at Position A) refuses to address the issue as well, saying "You should concentrate on growing and not these 'petty' things."

Can they do this? How can I firmly bring this to his notice that it's hurting my will to learn.

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    How does your title affect your ability or desire to learn? Titles are usually based on a system within each company. Why are your placing value on a title over learning new skills and achieving goals or accomplishments? – Thomas Owens Nov 15 '15 at 13:15
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    What is a skip boss? – Pepone Nov 15 '15 at 13:24
  • If they don't give you a title, and this is importznt to you, pick something reasonable yourself and ask if they object. – keshlam Nov 15 '15 at 17:12
  • @Pepone a skip boss is the boss of my boss – lesslazy Nov 15 '15 at 17:17
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    What country are you in? – Dan Pichelman Nov 15 '15 at 20:33

I recommend you look around the organization and identify the roles and titles that people have there. There are some companies that don't have titles and try to flatten the org as much as possible. Although I don't agree with this approach to talent management, it should be good for you to acknowledge if you are in a place with titles or not!

Once you know this, and assuming people around you with similar level of experience and seniority have titles, the something is going on with your relationship with your employer. They are having a different approach with compared to other employees. How many employees do they have?

You can also consider your performance might not be up to the level they are seeking and therefore moving you around to find you the right spot. Try to understand if this is the case. Finally, your title can help external people understand what you do at the company. That's another angle you can play if you believe folks outside your organization need to know what you and enhance overall company visibility.

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  • Yes, i tried to find out if my performance subpar but my boss's boss said 'you are good at so many things that we are having a hard time placing you anywhere' – lesslazy Nov 16 '15 at 3:04

Titles are important only within the organization you're working for. For the external world, using a description on your resume or LinkedIn profile that makes sense to the general population is more important. To the outside world, an "experience coach" is meaningless, especially when the work aligns with "customer service."

What's an experience letter, and what do you envision doing with it once you get it? Won't you add the work experience to your resume and describe it the the manner you feel describes the work you've done?

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  • I'm not sure I agree. When I use LinkedIn's hiring portal to look for people approach it is quite heavily geared around titles. This was true a couple of years ago but I feel it's quickly changing as LinkedIn hiring becomes more popular! – Michael A Nov 16 '15 at 0:07
  • Experience letter is a piece of paper company gives to its employees when they leave. I can't just write it in my resume without experience to show for it..! I mean i can just write i worked at Google (which I don't) but the next person hiring me is going to ask for some kind of proof for that right? – lesslazy Nov 16 '15 at 3:06

Identify the reasoning behind the change

You mentioned that this is your first job out of college so I imagine you're going through quite a significant period of growth. Without knowing the titles you've been assigned I can only assume that they're being revised to cater for the various movements that you're making this early into your career or for changes in company structure.

It's possible that these title changes have been made to accommodate your movement within the company or changes within the company itself.

Suggest a title you would like to hold

If you are approaching a manager stating that you're unhappy with the job titles that you've been cycling through then it's very difficult for them to resolve the matter in a way that satisfies you. You would be best served coming up with an appropriate title that satisfied the majority of your responsibilities and approaching them suggesting that you would be happiest if your title was kept as Position X to accommodate the work that you're doing.

Titles DO matter

I personally believe that it's a common misconception that title's only matter internally. More and more hiring is being performed through LinkedIn and other networks where an employer will search for or filter candidates by aspects related to their job title. Additionally having "software developer" on a position title sends a totally different message to "software support" - clearly identifying titles will help or hinder you later on.

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  • I have tried to bring talk about this with HR but he kind of puts it off till 'later'. And hell yes, titles matter.. What if i work my a*s off at this place as a (suppose) developer and my experience letter says i was the security guard?! – lesslazy Nov 16 '15 at 3:02
  • Have you gone to them with a suggestion for the title you would like? Having most of the work already done should help to get this resolved sooner! – Michael A Nov 16 '15 at 3:05
  • Yes, I went to the HR manager and said in my opinion Position K's the one i can justify the most and he replied with a "Do you want it changed on paper or just work in that department'.. – lesslazy Nov 16 '15 at 3:09
  • Ok. In your situation it sounds like the primary problem is your title on paper and you're happy with the responsibilities. Provided the two match up I would be asking HR to change it on paper (the formal payroll reference for your title). – Michael A Nov 16 '15 at 3:12

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