I am a 27-year-old cis-gendered female INTP with mild Asperger’s and a good job at a nonprofit. My organization is doing good work and actually effecting some positive change in this insane community of people. This isn’t really what I want to be doing long term (I am interested in Data Science and Machine Learning) but it is a good job and a good salary while I do personal and contract work in my chosen field with the hope of being able to enter that field as a career.
I have had a lot of different experiences, some have been successful and some haven’t, but what I have learned thus far follows:
- I am highly empathetic in spite of my social dysfunction and people tend to like me even though they find me odd.
- When I am not liked it is because people perceive me as cold, overly-rational, and arrogant. This is common among people with Asperger’s, especially women.
- I am really, really smart.
- I have a penchant for organizational thinking, resource management, and strategy.
- Many organizations are completely dysfunctional because the people in charge are not good at the aforementioned things.
- I am good at managing people as resources, but not very good at managing people as people.
I believe in my organization. I also believe that it is totally dysfunctional. In my experience, most nonprofits are.
Specifically, I am mismanaged as a resource. My direct supervisor (who is at the director level) has never had a direct report before me – and she does not know how to manage people either as people or as resources. The reason she was given an assistant is because she is doing two (completely different) full-time jobs at once – one of which is in line with her experience and career and the other which is not her area of expertise at all.
The problem is that she is unable to effectively delegate – so we have a situation where she is totally overwhelmed and I am completely bored. I have asked her repeatedly to allow me to take some things off her plate, but she is unwilling to trust my ability to do anything on my own, which basically amounts to her having a ton more work by virtue of having an assistant rather than having less. It’s maddening.
So there are two major problems: 1.) I am totally unsatisfied in my job and 2.) this mismanagement of resources is a waste of my salary – which this organization sorely needs.
One of my boss’s jobs is development, which is the second position that sort of fell into her lap and isn’t what she is good at or wants to do. I believe that it would not take much improvement on the part of a new, more experienced development director to pay for the difference between my current salary and his/her hypothetical new salary – the going rate for a fairly experienced development director at this kind of organization is only about $30,000 higher than what I’m making now. I want to suggest to the executive director that I leave my position and they use my salary to hire someone new at the same level as my current supervisor to ensure that both jobs get done well and fully.
I would like to stay at this organization if they can find a place for me where my talents are beneficial and I am permitted to take on interesting projects and learn new things, but regardless of where I end up, the organization doesn’t need me to be in my current position, and because of my boss’s difficulty with being a manager, I’m actually hurting the organization by being here more than I am helping it.
So my question is this: How the hell do I propose this plan (fire me, reduce the scope of my current boss’s job to something she can manage without an assistant, and hire a person to do development who actually knows what the hell they are doing) in a way that the board and executive director will take seriously? I am aware that this suggestion is brazen and likely to really piss off my current boss, but I also think it is a good solution to a very real problem that needs to be addressed.