I'm thinking of switching to a new practice area at my agency. How do I best go about this?

Switching practice areas should be handled diplomatically because you don't want it to be taken as a criticism of your supervisor.

Switching practice areas should be handled diplomatically because you don't want it to be taken as a criticism of your supervisor. You must make sure that there is an opening on the other team and that you are qualified for that job. It is important that your move to another team is viewed as a step up in your career path, as opposed to a lateral move.

Present a well-thought case to your supervisor regarding why a move makes sense for you. Reasons that will likely be met with agreement and support include career advancement, the opportunity to gain new skills, and the chance to expand your range of experience.

Avoid going to the leader of your prospective team first. This might create tension between practice areas and put you in an awkward position. Ultimately, your move to another practice area should be viewed as not only a positive step for your career, but also for the agency as a whole.

Steve Seeman is VP at Makovsky & Company.

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