Becoming a senior in your career

When we first step into the career field, we begin as a junior. And as a junior, we are fresh and green. That is where the more experienced senior members come in. They guide us on what to do and what not to do. The seniors assign and delegate tasks to the juniors. The juniors take on them and improve on their craft over time.

Slowly, after a few months to a year or two, the juniors start to develop their own opinions. They begin to have different ideas on how to handle and tackle problems. Not everything that the senior says now is absolute, and it is when tensions start to arise between the seniors and juniors.

It is also when the senior should step out of the way from time to time. Allow the juniors to develop their maturity and find their way around in their career. It is counter-productive to always have a head-on argument amidst the conflict, so let the juniors roam their way.

For juniors in this stage, you are on the right track. There are many things that you might disagree with or things that you want to change. It can be very uncomfortable but find your way to navigate through them. Resist the knee-jerk action of falling back to the comfort zone of having someone hand-holding you, just like when you first started your career. That honeymoon period, regardless of long or short, is long over. You are on the pathway to being that someone who hand-holds you in the first place.

Once you are past that stage, having navigated through the change, conflict, and complexity, that is when you become a senior. You know how things work from the inside out and how to make them better.