How should I bring up my desire to change roles in a down industry?
June 13, 2016 7:49 PM   Subscribe

I'm currently a mechanical engineer in one of the very large oil & gas companies. Because of the price of oil, there have been massive layoffs recently. I survived the latest round of layoffs which involved every engineering group in the company. I've been with the company for a few years and have been feeling like the engineering role I'm in is not a great fit for many reasons that have to do with job content and team culture. This is not my first job in the oil industry and I feel like by now I have a pretty good inner compass in order to be able to determine a more suitable role for me. I would like to look within the same company for a new role, however, since the mass layoffs, I feel like there is no ability for me to move.

I've talked to our Ombuds office to get strategies for dealing with my current role, but I feel like they have not worked due to cultural issues. Should I reach out to someone else within the company? Or, should I just look for work in another industry? I missed my chance to move back to my previous company in 2014 before the downturn and now I'm regretting it.
posted by LSUEngineer to Work & Money (2 answers total)
I'm in the oil and gas industry. Try going to a professional conference to get some context and feel for the doom and gloom around. I don't mean this snarkily. Many of my friends have been laid off and some have been unemployed for months to a year. The ones who haven't been laid off -- well, they're pretty bored due to lack of activity and investment, but at least they have a job that pays the bills. My advice would be to hang on there and move when the times get better (I look at oil forecasts and stuff like that, and my prediction is the job market will pick up in mid 2017). You could try working for another industry, but I suspect there are many others like you who have been laid off.
posted by moiraine at 1:48 AM on June 14, 2016 [1 favorite]

I was you (but only 3 years out of school). I solved it by moving to CA and going to law school. Best decision I ever made.
posted by bluesky78987 at 6:57 AM on June 14, 2016

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