/ Asked by iris
It has been really frustrating to work so hard for 6 years on a bachelor's in marketing and be stuck at a dead end position in my organization. I've learned and mastered pretty much everything they throw at my desk, hoping to one day be considered for a better position, but it seems impossible to get where I want (which is the Marketing department) without any experience. Every time I see a position opened in that department, it requires experience that I don't have. I'm 48 and running out of time here. It took me every adversity to finish my degree 4 years ago. I know I made the decision to go back to school late in my 30's, but I had desire to achieve that goal and to do something, not just for me, but for my family, and it seems all the sacrifices I made were worthless. I would appreciate anyone's advise and suggestions. Thanks.
Answered by Rachel, Hiring Expert at Eaton, on Thursday, August 6, 2015
I know that this is frustrating and challenging but the sacrifices you and they made are not worthless.  Education is always beneficial. "Education is the most powerful weapon we can use to change the world" (Nelson Mandela).  I would suggest speaking to the marketing manager and explaining your interest in moving into his/her department and questioning what are projects and/or other activities that you can participate in that would help gain you the experience you need in order to be competitive for the next open role.  I would also suggest speaking with some of your marketing counterparts asking about how they got involved in their roles.   If you have not already I would also suggest growing your marketing network by participating in professional development workshops and organizations.  This will broaden your opportunities and provide you with other options to consider.  
Answered by Lori, Hiring Expert at Cigna, on Thursday, August 6, 2015
As frustrating as this can be for you, it's important to keep a positive attitude. Just like you invested your time in getting a degree, it can sometimes take time and a lot of effort to make a job transition. The most important thing you can do is to network with people already in the roles you are interested in. Find out directly from them what their qualifications are and how they navigated their career to get to the role. You can also set up time with a manager of the area to understand what he/she is looking for when he/she has an opening on her team. Often times, by starting those relationships, you position yourself to stand out from other applicants, when a role opens up. The fact that you went back to school and achieved your degree shows people that you are motivated and goal oriented. Those are two traits which are important to any role. If you find you are lacking in some specific experience, see if you can get it by taking on additional projects or through volunteer efforts outside of the workplace. Good luck!
Answered by Steve, Hiring Expert at Caterpillar Inc., on Friday, August 7, 2015
I understand your frustrations.  There are three actions that I would recommend to you that could eventually help you move forward.  First, seek out a mentor.  Perhaps this person is your immediate manager, but if not, look into whether or not your company offers a formal mentoring program.  If they do not offer one, think about who has informally been a mentor for you either inside or outside of your company.

Second, build your network.  This can be accomplished by setting up informational meetings with the leaders of the areas of the company in which you have interest.  These are not interviews.  They are simply meetings in which you learning more about their groups and what it takes to succeed in their group and helping them to get to know you.  What will usually happen from these meetings is they will recommend someone else for you to speak with and suddenly, you have a large network.

Third, seek out projects in which you can participate in other departments.  This is another way to demonstrate to those who may not be familiar with you, what you are capable of.  Be participative in project meetings and excel and what tasks are assigned to you.

None of this guarantees anything, but taking these steps will help you go in the direction that you are seeking.    
Answered by Ashley, Hiring Expert at Textron Inc., on Wednesday, August 12, 2015
It sounds like you are in a rut and getting a bit discouraged. A lot of people experience this right after they finish their degree and ask themselves if it was worth it. Going back to school is not easy to do so first off make sure you take a step back and congratulate yourself on this accomplishment. I would consider looking for a mentor or a job coach that can help you narrow down the types of skills you should be working on getting. Since you are at a standstill in your organization, you should reach out to people in your network that are at other companies and think about applying to different types of marketing jobs. Just because your company does not have a position that suits your skill set, does not mean that other companies will have the same requirements. Congratulations on completing your degree, I wish you the best of luck!
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