Author Topic: Need advice on filling in for manager during leave of absence  (Read 1785 times)

naturelover

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I have a situation I'm looking for some advice on. My manager will be taking a 3-month leave of absence later this year and I will be expected to fill in for this person. I am a non-manager employee and am wondering about any options to ask for more money in exchange for performing managerial duties for 3 months. What are your thoughts? Legit request for more money or off the mark for such a short period of time?

For reference, I currently am the only one at my workplace who does what I do and am planning to FIRE within the next 10 months. I'm also thinking about giving notice before this person's LOA. I'm currently FI and am doing OMY and don't have to work the next 10 months.

Any thoughts on possibly gaining leverage by giving notice before the LOA - Mad Fientist's Power of Quitting post comes to mind (https://www.madfientist.com/power-of-quitting/)? I also don't want to be a jerk or burn bridges.

Thanks for any thoughts/suggestions you may have!

reeshau

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Re: Need advice on filling in for manager during leave of absence
« Reply #1 on: April 26, 2019, 07:03:27 AM »
Traditional advice would be not to ask for more: that this would be a time to demonstrate your abilities, with an increased chance of assuming that position or something similar in the future.  Given that you are looking to FIRE anyway, I assume this isn't interesting?  (that is, you aren't planning any kind of second act / side gig where this would be useful experience)

Having said that, will you be required to fulfill your existing job at the same time?  If so, then there is something there.  What you ask for, depends.  You say you are FI, and this is already OMY, so do you have plans for some additional money?  Or would you want to ask for help so that this becomes an interesting experience, rather than a burden or outright hell?

continuing with that point, maybe it is time to give notice, and this works out to being involved in hiring / training your backfill--which would be the person doing your job while you are filling in for your boss.  It might mean that you leave at the end of the 3 month leave, though.  Would you care if it did?  That might be a way to make an elegant exit out of it.

thd7t

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Re: Need advice on filling in for manager during leave of absence
« Reply #2 on: April 26, 2019, 07:14:50 AM »
I am currently filling in as a manager after my manager retired and the upper level of my department is being restructured.  I received "Acting Pay" for the duration of this time.  It doesn't bring me to where I want to be if I get the full time position, but it's a nice amount.  Your role and responsibilities will be greater and you will be expected to do most or all of your current work.  You should receive compensation for this.

GuitarStv

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Re: Need advice on filling in for manager during leave of absence
« Reply #3 on: April 26, 2019, 07:53:26 AM »
Every place I've ever worked, it's expected that you take on additional roles responsibilities without additional pay.  If they decide that you have excelled at the position and they are in the mood for it they will offer you more money.

Enigma

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Re: Need advice on filling in for manager during leave of absence
« Reply #4 on: April 26, 2019, 07:57:56 AM »
I say you ask for more money or compensation of some sort.  One or two weeks of taking on a management position while your boss it out of town is different than 3 months.  Many of the companies I have worked for have it written in their handbooks that doing over 30 days of a position requires extra compensation.

You are within 10 months of FIRE anyway so the extra money isn't an issue.  If you are taking on more responsibility it is only fair that you are compensated.  If you are doing less work and more delegating...  well that would be like a vacation instead.

naturelover

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Re: Need advice on filling in for manager during leave of absence
« Reply #5 on: April 26, 2019, 09:20:24 AM »
Thanks, everyone, for your thoughtful replies.

will you be required to fulfill your existing job at the same time?

Yes, I will be required to also do my current job as there is no one else to do my work.

I am currently filling in as a manager after my manager retired and the upper level of my department is being restructured.  I received "Acting Pay" for the duration of this time.  It doesn't bring me to where I want to be if I get the full time position, but it's a nice amount.  Your role and responsibilities will be greater and you will be expected to do most or all of your current work.  You should receive compensation for this.

Are you still doing your previous job or have you fully moved into the acting manager role? Are you filling in until a new manager is hired or are you expecting to be promoted into that position?

Every place I've ever worked, it's expected that you take on additional roles responsibilities without additional pay.  If they decide that you have excelled at the position and they are in the mood for it they will offer you more money.

I totally get this and would imagine that's how my company would see it. However, given that I'm willing and able to walk, I'm wondering if I can facilitate something in my favor without being a jerk about it.

I say you ask for more money or compensation of some sort.  One or two weeks of taking on a management position while your boss it out of town is different than 3 months.  Many of the companies I have worked for have it written in their handbooks that doing over 30 days of a position requires extra compensation.

You are within 10 months of FIRE anyway so the extra money isn't an issue.  If you are taking on more responsibility it is only fair that you are compensated.  If you are doing less work and more delegating...  well that would be like a vacation instead.

Thanks for mentioning the bit about extra compensation for a role performed over 30 days. I'll look into this, although I doubt my company has anything specified about this.

This would definitely be a situation where I'd be taking on more responsibility. I would be doing my current job and expected to do as much of the manager's job as I'm able to.





thd7t

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Re: Need advice on filling in for manager during leave of absence
« Reply #6 on: April 26, 2019, 09:26:44 AM »
Thanks, everyone, for your thoughtful replies.

will you be required to fulfill your existing job at the same time?

Yes, I will be required to also do my current job as there is no one else to do my work.

I am currently filling in as a manager after my manager retired and the upper level of my department is being restructured.  I received "Acting Pay" for the duration of this time.  It doesn't bring me to where I want to be if I get the full time position, but it's a nice amount.  Your role and responsibilities will be greater and you will be expected to do most or all of your current work.  You should receive compensation for this.

Are you still doing your previous job or have you fully moved into the acting manager role? Are you filling in until a new manager is hired or are you expecting to be promoted into that position?

I am still doing my old job (but less).  My situation is unusual, because someone a couple steps above me left at the same time as my manager and there has been a bit of a discussion about what to do with my group.  If we stay where we are, I will probably just move into the role, but if we get moved, I will probably have to apply.  We're a state agency, so our rules are somewhat rigid.

marty998

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Re: Need advice on filling in for manager during leave of absence
« Reply #7 on: April 26, 2019, 06:03:25 PM »
Yes, if there is additional staff management functions that you do not currently perform (e.g. performance reviews), then it would not be unreasonable to ask for a temporary higher duties allowance.


herbgeek

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Re: Need advice on filling in for manager during leave of absence
« Reply #8 on: April 28, 2019, 06:18:38 AM »
I would definitely NOT announce your retirement plans prior to taking on this extra assignment, as you'll lose all leverage in getting extra compensation.  Since they'd know you are leaving anyways, there would be no incentive at all for them to compensate you.  They only would do this if they wanted you to stay on.

BicycleB

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Re: Need advice on filling in for manager during leave of absence
« Reply #9 on: April 28, 2019, 07:25:21 AM »
@herbgeek is probably right, but I signed in to offer the opposite idea. Probably you should listen to herbgeek!

If you're going to leave, why not propose a temporary contractor arrangement in which they pay you a consulting wage to do both jobs for a while... a special wage that is higher than your current wage by a large amount, but frees them from any ongoing obligations. You could be paid more because you're not in the company pay scale any more, and when they're done with you, they terminate the contract at their convenience. Just an idea.

naturelover

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Re: Need advice on filling in for manager during leave of absence
« Reply #10 on: April 28, 2019, 10:49:37 AM »
I would definitely NOT announce your retirement plans prior to taking on this extra assignment, as you'll lose all leverage in getting extra compensation.  Since they'd know you are leaving anyways, there would be no incentive at all for them to compensate you.  They only would do this if they wanted you to stay on.

Does your opinion change at all if the reason for leaving is another job and not retirement? I will not be calling it retirement when I leave. I'm looking for an interesting p/t job and also do unrelated freelance work so if/when anyone asks, one of those will be my reason for leaving. How does one use the fact that they are leaving (or could leave any time) as leverage without sounding like you are making threats ("I'd like more money or I'm going to leave", etc.)? There is no one else to slot right into my duties nor would they easily hire for it (it's a relatively uncommon job).

@herbgeek is probably right, but I signed in to offer the opposite idea. Probably you should listen to herbgeek!

If you're going to leave, why not propose a temporary contractor arrangement in which they pay you a consulting wage to do both jobs for a while... a special wage that is higher than your current wage by a large amount, but frees them from any ongoing obligations. You could be paid more because you're not in the company pay scale any more, and when they're done with you, they terminate the contract at their convenience. Just an idea.

Interesting idea. Something to consider. Thanks!

cangelosibrown

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Re: Need advice on filling in for manager during leave of absence
« Reply #11 on: April 30, 2019, 09:26:56 AM »
Question no one seems to have brought up: is this temporary stint as manager actually something that interests you? Seems like a hassle to me, and not fun at all. OTOH, the company is probably thinking it's something that you're looking forward to ("it's good for me career, a chance to prove myself as a manager"). If it were me, and maybe it's too late for this, I would have the discussion and tell them I don't want to do it. It's just more work and more stress for nothing in return. Maybe they'll turn around and offer a raise it something in return, maybe they'll have someone else do it, maybe they'll try to threaten you into doing it. Seems like those are the only options, and I would be fine with any of them in your situation.

GuitarStv

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Re: Need advice on filling in for manager during leave of absence
« Reply #12 on: April 30, 2019, 11:11:19 AM »
Question no one seems to have brought up: is this temporary stint as manager actually something that interests you? Seems like a hassle to me, and not fun at all. OTOH, the company is probably thinking it's something that you're looking forward to ("it's good for me career, a chance to prove myself as a manager"). If it were me, and maybe it's too late for this, I would have the discussion and tell them I don't want to do it. It's just more work and more stress for nothing in return. Maybe they'll turn around and offer a raise it something in return, maybe they'll have someone else do it, maybe they'll try to threaten you into doing it. Seems like those are the only options, and I would be fine with any of them in your situation.

I'd be very careful doing this.  "Does not rise to challenges, does not accept new tasks/responsibilities, fails to grow as an employee" will not do you wonders at review time.

cangelosibrown

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Re: Need advice on filling in for manager during leave of absence
« Reply #13 on: April 30, 2019, 11:32:02 AM »
I'd be very careful doing this.  "Does not rise to challenges, does not accept new tasks/responsibilities, fails to grow as an employee" will not do you wonders at review time.

I would agree to some extent for most people. But she's FI and looking to retire in 10 months. There may not be another review time. And if there is, vague negatives like that certainly won't matter to her. There's a big difference between "not want to burn Bridges" and feeling the need to accept whatever shit the company dumps on you til the day you quit.

Goldielocks

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Re: Need advice on filling in for manager during leave of absence
« Reply #14 on: April 30, 2019, 11:58:55 AM »
Only ask for money if you think you will need to work more hours.  Asking for more money when the upper management is thinking that the majority of employee / management duties will be mostly "on hold" for three months, is not going to go over well.  Most temp cover positions actually take up only a portion of the total duties, which is why they need a permanent person after 3 months. 

Traditionally, the way to do this is to work with upper management to cut some scope from both your tasks and the management role, to have it fit into a 40 hr week (assuming you are non-exempt now).   Open discussions about being able to get some of the work done, versus none (if you are overloaded) work well here.  The goal is really to create an enjoyable 10months, rather than more money, no?

How many people will you be managing?   If it is a group of 10 or less, where you are the sole manager... well, you can make that work with very little extra attention from you for 12 weeks.  It is really the other day to day workload tasks, or added meetings that are the problems here.