Cannot do new job and made a very embarrassing mistake... should I quit

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Anonymous #1
#1
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Hi,

I don’t know what I am hoping for by posting this but here it goes. I just made a majorly embarrassing mistake at my first ever job that I started on Monday after a series of other smaller mistakes.

In a team video meeting I had to give a summary of a piece of draft government legislation effecting our industry. I didn’t really understand it but tried to blag it by sounding confident. I was interrupted by my line manager who said ‘no, you’ve got that wrong, it proposes quite literally the opposite of what you are saying. That’s the whole reason I asked you to summarise it’. Then there was then a really long awkward silence and I went very red

I apologised to the team and said I would speak with my line manager later for clarification.

In retrospect I should have spoken to my line manager and explained I didn’t understand but he had assumed I would easily understand it and I had already spoken to him once before about it.

It was so embarrassing, literally the whole organisation was on the call, including the CEO.

It’s a good job and in this market I should be grateful but I don’t think I’m cut out for it and am considering quitting before I am pushed. I just don’t understand anything and I keep making mistakes. Essentially, it is like they want a lawyer which I most definitely am not.

Any advice?
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by mma_jd)
Oh wow that's very embarassing, if I was in that call I'd never wanna be seen with you again personally. I don't think you should just quit, you should also move to another city to ensure you never see those people again, and change/delete all your social media profiles. Maybe legally change your name too, you can use a deed poll for that. Yikes.
Thanks.... 😣
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ed98
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OP everyone makes mistakes at their first job and well done for even getting a job. I promise you no one will remember this starting next week. Enjoy your weekend, speak to your line manager on Monday. One of the worst mistakes in a new job is to not ask for help when you are struggling. They wouldn’t have hired you to begin with if they thought you were completely unqualified.
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ed98
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(Original post by mma_jd)
Oh wow that's very embarassing, if I was in that call I'd never wanna be seen with you again personally. I don't think you should just quit, you should also move to another city to ensure you never see those people again, and change/delete all your social media profiles. Maybe legally change your name too, you can use a deed poll for that. Yikes.
This is rich coming from someone who got rejected by the University of Reading 😂

How embarrassing must that have been? Surprised you didn’t move away and change your identity.
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giella
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What do you mean by “they want a lawyer”?

Need a bit more context I’m afraid. What’s the job or at the very least what’s the sector? How much are you being paid and what’s your background?
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by ed98)
OP everyone makes mistakes at their first job and well done for even getting a job. I promise you no one will remember this starting next week. Enjoy your weekend, speak to your line manager on Monday. One of the worst mistakes in a new job is to not ask for help when you are struggling. They wouldn’t have hired you to begin with if they thought you were completely unqualified.
:suith:
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ROTL94
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We all make mistakes, we are all human beings and I am sure your manager understands that, you shouldn't quit, what you should do instead is learn from this and become better at the job.
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Xarao
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Mistakes happen. Although, you shouldn't of given a presentation on something that you have little to no knowledge of. I would've pushed back definitely.
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999tigger
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(Original post by Anonymous)
Hi,

I don’t know what I am hoping for by posting this but here it goes. I just made a majorly embarrassing mistake at my first ever job that I started on Monday after a series of other smaller mistakes.

In a team video meeting I had to give a summary of a piece of draft government legislation effecting our industry. I didn’t really understand it but tried to blag it by sounding confident. I was interrupted by my line manager who said ‘no, you’ve got that wrong, it proposes quite literally the opposite of what you are saying. That’s the whole reason I asked you to summarise it’. Then there was then a really long awkward silence and I went very red

I apologised to the team and said I would speak with my line manager later for clarification.

In retrospect I should have spoken to my line manager and explained I didn’t understand but he had assumed I would easily understand it and I had already spoken to him once before about it.

It was so embarrassing, literally the whole organisation was on the call, including the CEO.

It’s a good job and in this market I should be grateful but I don’t think I’m cut out for it and am considering quitting before I am pushed. I just don’t understand anything and I keep making mistakes. Essentially, it is like they want a lawyer which I most definitely am not.

Any advice?
Agree that is embarrassing.

Why on earth didnt you either do the work or if stuck then run it past someone who knew?
You tried to blag it? Very risky for you and the company.


I would:.

1. Do a summary sheet of the information you should have known.
2. Speak to the manager and apologise, say you panicked or just messed up. Dont say you blagged or didnt do enough work.
3. Say you realise the consequences.
4. Give hum the 1 page printout of what was needed to be presented and ask for permission to send it out to try and correct the situation plus get the information where its needed.


Dont hide.
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by giella)
What do you mean by “they want a lawyer”?

Need a bit more context I’m afraid. What’s the job or at the very least what’s the sector? How much are you being paid and what’s your background?
It is difficult to explain without saying specifically what the role is and outing the company. Essentially it is like a regulatory affairs role. I have to keep the organisation and key stakeholders aware of changes to legislation that can effect the industry. Because it is such a large industry I have to look at almost every single bill and enquiry that goes through the UK parliament, devolved administrations and the EU. I have to go through them all with a fine tooth comb and produce a summary of them. I don't understand the legal language and almost all bills make references to previous acts which makes it all more complicated.
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threeportdrift
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(Original post by Anonymous)
It is difficult to explain without saying specifically what the role is and outing the company. Essentially it is like a regulatory affairs role. I have to keep the organisation and key stakeholders aware of changes to legislation that can effect the industry. Because it is such a large industry I have to look at almost every single bill and enquiry that goes through the UK parliament, devolved administrations and the EU. I have to go through them all with a fine tooth comb and produce a summary of them. I don't understand the legal language and almost all bills make references to previous acts which makes it all more complicated.
There's plenty of books that can help you understand the legal side. Buy a couple, keep them on your desk, look things up - you'll soon get up to speed.

Next time you have a 121 with your line manager, ask about their progression expectations, I'm sure you'll find the say it will be 6 months, even a year, before you are fully up to speed.
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by 999tigger)
Agree that is embarrassing.

Why on earth didnt you either do the work or if stuck then run it past someone who knew?
You tried to blag it? Very risky for you and the company.


I would:.

1. Do a summary sheet of the information you should have known.
2. Speak to the manager and apologise, say you panicked or just messed up. Dont say you blagged or didnt do enough work.
3. Say you realise the consequences.
4. Give hum the 1 page printout of what was needed to be presented and ask for permission to send it out to try and correct the situation plus get the information where its needed.


Dont hide.
(Original post by Xarao)
Mistakes happen. Although, you shouldn't of given a presentation on something that you have little to no knowledge of. I would've pushed back definitely.
I didn't know I was expected to do a summary in advance of the meeting. I have a meeting with someone next week about it but I was asked for a summary for everyone else's benefit. Although I hadn't fully understood it I thought I at least had the jist of it. It was stupid and I wish I had just said I didn't fully understand it enough to give a summary....
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by threeportdrift)
There's plenty of books that can help you understand the legal side. Buy a couple, keep them on your desk, look things up - you'll soon get up to speed.

Next time you have a 121 with your line manager, ask about their progression expectations, I'm sure you'll find the say it will be 6 months, even a year, before you are fully up to speed.
I didn't expect it to be like this and feel way out of my depth.

It was advertised as a communications role but they've put me in the legal department and everyone else has a law degree with years of experience. I don't understand why they hired me and not a law graduate?

I don't have 121s with my line manager, just emails and team meetings.
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Xarao
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(Original post by Anonymous)
I didn't know I was expected to do a summary in advance of the meeting. I have a meeting with someone next week about it but I was asked for a summary for everyone else's benefit. Although I hadn't fully understood it I thought I at least had the jist of it. It was stupid and I wish I had just said I didn't fully understand it enough to give a summary....
Yes it's embarrassing, but I definitely wouldn't quit over it. You already know how desperate people are for jobs since COVID, and you leaving on the first day is just going to look awful. Stick it out and you'll get passed it 100%.
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999tigger
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(Original post by Anonymous)
I didn't know I was expected to do a summary in advance of the meeting. I have a meeting with someone next week about it but I was asked for a summary for everyone else's benefit. Although I hadn't fully understood it I thought I at least had the jist of it. It was stupid and I wish I had just said I didn't fully understand it enough to give a summary....
I have no idea what your manager said or not.
Spend the weekend learning the work and make the information sheet.

This is the real world and not school. Information and advice have consequences. They hired you because they believe you had potential, show them you can rescue the situation.
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by Xarao)
Yes it's embarrassing, but I definitely wouldn't quit over it. You already know how desperate people are for jobs since COVID and you leaving on the first day is just going to look awful. Stick it out and you'll get passed it 100%.
Thank you for the encouragement.
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by 999tigger)
I have no idea what your manager said or not.
Spend the weekend learning the work and make the information sheet.

This is the real world and not school. Information and advice have consequences. They hired you because they believe you had potential, show them you can rescue the situation.
Thanks for the advice. I tried really hard to understand it but I just can't. I thought the role was a communications role but they have put me in the legal department. I am thinking of giving it another week as I am struggling so badly with the role atm.
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giella
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Are you saying the job is not as advertised? You’re being expected to take on duties outside of the job description? It sounds like this job is quite specific and that this sort of task is part of your core responsibilities. The fact you didn’t expect this is a little surprising. If it is outside of the described duties and responsibilities agreed at the point of contract, they are obliged to provide you with training at the very least, especially if you’re struggling.

I do wonder if it’s that simple though. You said you tried to blag it, which is never a good idea and that was the error in this situation. Recognising tasks as they’re allocated to you and having insight into your limitations is part of your responsibility in any job role. This sounds like something you need to reflect on and to identify what support you need to achieve this.

You also need to reflect on what other role you may have played in this. If you’ve overstated your skills, you need to be honest with yourself about this. This job might not be for you if it’s unsuited to your knowledge base or core skill set. Summarising legislation sounds like quite a skilled role, requiring a person with specialist knowledge. If you don’t have that, how did you get the role in the first place?
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username5420160
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(Original post by Anonymous)
Hi,

I don’t know what I am hoping for by posting this but here it goes. I just made a majorly embarrassing mistake at my first ever job that I started on Monday after a series of other smaller mistakes.

In a team video meeting I had to give a summary of a piece of draft government legislation effecting our industry. I didn’t really understand it but tried to blag it by sounding confident. I was interrupted by my line manager who said ‘no, you’ve got that wrong, it proposes quite literally the opposite of what you are saying. That’s the whole reason I asked you to summarise it’. Then there was then a really long awkward silence and I went very red

I apologised to the team and said I would speak with my line manager later for clarification.

In retrospect I should have spoken to my line manager and explained I didn’t understand but he had assumed I would easily understand it and I had already spoken to him once before about it.

It was so embarrassing, literally the whole organisation was on the call, including the CEO.

It’s a good job and in this market I should be grateful but I don’t think I’m cut out for it and am considering quitting before I am pushed. I just don’t understand anything and I keep making mistakes. Essentially, it is like they want a lawyer which I most definitely am not.

Any advice?
Don't you dare give up just yet m8!!! There is a reason why YOU got the job and other people didn't!! Give it a chance and take this as an opportunity to show them that you can do this! You've come so far now you can't quit just yet. If you think that this job isn't right then you can always move on. I believe in you
Last edited by username5420160; 1 month ago
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by giella)
Are you saying the job is not as advertised? You’re being expected to take on duties outside of the job description? It sounds like this job is quite specific and that this sort of task is part of your core responsibilities. The fact you didn’t expect this is a little surprising. If it is outside of the described duties and responsibilities agreed at the point of contract, they are obliged to provide you with training at the very least, especially if you’re struggling.

I do wonder if it’s that simple though. You said you tried to blag it, which is never a good idea and that was the error in this situation. Recognising tasks as they’re allocated to you and having insight into your limitations is part of your responsibility in any job role. This sounds like something you need to reflect on and to identify what support you need to achieve this.

You also need to reflect on what other role you may have played in this. If you’ve overstated your skills, you need to be honest with yourself about this. This job might not be for you if it’s unsuited to your knowledge base or core skill set. Summarising legislation sounds like quite a skilled role, requiring a person with specialist knowledge. If you don’t have that, how did you get the role in the first place?
It was advertised as a communications role. The job description was basically along the lines of keeping stakeholders up to date on relevant legislation and developments in the industry. I didn't expect to get the job and was surprised when I was offered it. I can see that they advertised for it twice over the summer so maybe they had difficulty filling it, which I find odd.

During the interview I explained that as a politics graduate, I have experience and understanding of the legislative process which is very different from actually understanding the technical language of a piece of UK or EU legislation but thinking about it now maybe there was a miscommunication.

I am also very enthusiastic about the industry, so maybe they liked that during the interview.
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