forced to change job title
March 30, 2010 10:01 PM   Subscribe

Should I fight an attempt to change my job title?

Okay, new job, maybe 6 weeks. Title is 'Internet Marketing Manager.' In reality, my responsibility arena is more in terms of managing an online web store for the company, plus relevant marketing. Nevertheless, that was the title of the position when I was hired.
One week after I was hired, the company hired a marketing director. Since we work in different departments, there hasn't been a lot of contact between us work-wise. There's definitely been bit a bit of primate ranking going on, though I tend to simply mind my own business and stay relaxed if possible about it. Overall, the marketing director seems like a fairly typical marketing nerd, kind of an alpha type, very social, where I'm a bit of an introvert, technical type.
So, I learned today that the marketing director is 'concerned' that clients will misconstrue my title. It will confuse them.
Really no one cares about it but him and me. It's one of those silly turf things that get started in companies. This is a small family-owned manufacturing business, so the currents can sometimes be a bit intense and idiosyncratic.
So, for me, the title is one I like. I want to keep it and I don't want someone reaching out a godly finger and altering my job title in this way. It's irrelevant to anything except internal politics in my opinion.
I think it's an alpha way of sidelining a possible opponent. I'm not an opponent, more likely I'd be helping him in this very area of Internet marketing though that's not my position's ostensible focus.
I can speak to the person responsible, perhaps try to frame things to his advantage to leave things as they are, I can be stubborn or use what internal capital I've accumulated to attempt to stop this...throw a fit in other words, or acquiesce and use my buddha-like nature to simply roll with the change.
I've even been asked to suggest new titles for my job. 'Grand Poobah of the Internet Dominions and Parts Unknown' comes to mind. Any suggestions appreciated as to the appropriate course of action, or non-action.
posted by diode to Work & Money (5 answers total)
"No problem at all. I'll come up with a one that would work better."

And then create a non-ridiculous title that accurately describes your job in a very positive light. Be the bigger person and get a better job title in one fell swoop.

Director/Head of Web Marketing and Sales?
posted by sallybrown at 10:08 PM on March 30, 2010 [1 favorite]

I agree, he's being a bit of a dick. That said, if you want come out ahead it may be better to re-name your job.

On-line Commerce Manager or E-Commerce Manager come to mind.
posted by Kerasia at 10:44 PM on March 30, 2010

I've seen this before. If you want to change your title, change it to something that will not make it look like you report to him.

You want it to be broad enough so that it seems like you have your own turf, but specific enough so that he does not claim that you are under him.

Because you are the Internet marketing manager, one CAN make the argument that you are a subset of general marketing (of which he is the manager).

If you make it E-commerce manager, you will also have to do with sales-type issues.

Only you can assess what your company is doing (and more importantly, HEADING), and that leaves you as the only person who can figure it out.

I suggest you go to and look up different marketing titles and see which ones work under the above guidelines.

Good luck.

PS. "nerd" does not equal "alpha type, very social". He's a marketing boner, you're the marketing nerd.
posted by hal_c_on at 12:11 AM on March 31, 2010 [1 favorite]

He's tripping over the 'Marketing' part of your title. You need to keep the 'Manager' part. If it won't be an issue with Sales, E-Commerce Manager could work. So could some iteration of Web Presence Manager.

If in suggesting alternate titles, you can wrangle a 'Director' title out of it, do so. That will help you down the road if he's looking to expand his fief.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 5:09 AM on March 31, 2010

Okay thanks for all the comments. I think e-commerce manager rings a bell for me, so that's what I'm going to suggest.
posted by diode at 7:25 PM on March 31, 2010

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