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by Abigail Van Buren

Manager Who Grabs Brass Ring Ends Up With Tarnished Hands

DEAR ABBY: I just made the biggest career mistake of my life. I was working for a wonderful company. Then a former co-worker told me about a management position opening at the agency she went to work for. I thought it would be my golden opportunity for advancement. I submitted my resume and, after two interviews, got the job.

The problem: This is the unfriendliest company I have ever seen. Management belittles staff. Praise is seldom given. There is no kindness, no "good mornings" uttered -- the people here are just plain MEAN.

I am a friendly, outgoing person, and I'm having a hard time adapting. I miss my old job. I realize now that I made a hasty decision, and I don't know what to do. My old position has been filled, so there's no way I can go back. What should I do? -- RELUCTANT MANAGER IN VERMONT

DEAR RELUCTANT MANAGER: Your predicament proves the truth of the saying, "The grass isn't always greener." For the sake of your mental health, start looking for another job. There is no way you are going to change the corporate culture in the place you're now working.

Don't discount your old workplace; stay in touch. Something may open up there, and your former colleagues may be glad to welcome you back.