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How this Assistant Manager Went from Falling Behind to Being One of the Best Performers on His Team

Alyssa Greenfield
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Published on November 6, 2017

Raise your hand if you’ve ever fallen behind at a job or internship. It’s a frustrating situation to be in, but it’s also incredibly common—most of us have felt stuck at some point.

That’s why we love Matt’s story. Today, Matt is an Assistant Manager at the global transportation provider Enterprise Rent-A-Car, but there’s more to his story than meets the eye.

Matt first joined Enterprise as an intern. The experience was so rewarding that upon graduation he applied to and landed a spot in the Management Training Program at Enterprise. Matt went into the program feeling like he had a major advantage: his internship taught him a lot about the company and his customer service skills were great. But he didn’t get promoted as quickly as he’d hoped. He even saw newer teammates he mentored get promoted before him.

After a year without a promotion, Matt could have chalked it up to a poor fit and applied to other companies. Plenty of people do that. Here’s what he did instead:

Areas for Improvement

In the Enterprise Management Training Program, success is measured on a mix of sales, customer service, business growth, and employee development called the Matrix. Matt’s scores were off the charts for customer service and employee development, but his sales skills needed some improvement. Matt reached out to his manager for guidance and support, and together they came up with a plan. What happened next transformed Matt’s career.

A Major Change 

Matt and his manager worked closely to identify and improve gaps in his sales skills. Through activities like role-playing sales calls, reviewing basic training lessons, and one-on-one meetings to assess his progress, Matt started dramatically improving. His commitment to improving even got him to the top of the employee scores. One month into his improvement project, he was promoted to Assistant Manager. This summer, he celebrated another major achievement: becoming one of the top Assistant Managers in his area.

A Company-Wide Support System

“The management team here is driven to make sure you’re comfortable doing things the right way and learning the right way,” Matt says. “People have always taken me under their wing here, from area managers down to branch and assistant managers. It’s really a team effort for the customer.”

Because of that level of support, Matt made more progress staying at Enterprise than he would have if he gave up and went to another company. Now, he inspires other new hires to stick with it.

Matt shared a few reminders for anyone who feels like they’re falling behind at work:

1. Once upon a time, even the CEO knew nothing about the company (and probably faced a good deal of challenges at some point). Everyone has to start from the beginning and everyone faces professional setbacks. If you feel like you can’t get ahead, this should help keep things in perspective until you’re back at the top.

2. If you’re having a tough time at work, make it clear to your manager that you’re dedicated to making improvements. Be proactive about finding a solution, and you’ll probably find he or she is happy to help you out.

3. Don’t stop learning and improving once you’ve caught up. If you’re already in the habit of professional development, keep that momentum going. There are always opportunities to keep improving—no matter where you are in your career.

Want to work for a company that’s committed to helping you succeed? Enterprise Rent-A-Car is hiring now, so head over to WayUp and apply!

Alyssa Greenfield WayUp Staff

Alyssa is the Senior Branded Content Editor at WayUp. A writer who loves sharing career advice, she helps the WayUp community learn about all the great companies that are eager to hire talented students and recent grads.

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