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Old 07-28-2013, 07:58 AM   #21
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Being FI, I would not take the promotion.
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Very conservative with investments. Not ER'd yet, 48 years old. Please do not take anything I write or imply as legal, financial or medical advice directed to you. Contact your own financial advisor, healthcare provider, or attorney for financial, medical and legal advice.
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Old 07-28-2013, 09:11 AM   #22
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Spanky, I'm positive you're making the right choice.......having been on both sides of the "fence" and as I grow older, nearing retirement, if I had the options you do, I'd also be focusing on my "real" future. In fact, I am.

It's interesting that most larger Japanese companies have a similar program for their older management, at least they used to. That is, when a mid-high level manager got into his 50's, they were given the choice of returning to technical/individual contributor roles. During my relatively long stint in Japan, I saw numerous cases of middle manager's "stepping down" and taking technical and administrative jobs. Not many stayed in the "frying pan/fire". Almost every one I discussed this with was happier and did it for exactly the same reasons you stated.

Do your couple of years of technical work, get your fill of the workplace, the thoughts of freedom will tell you when it's time. I think the real key is to be ready and have no regrets when it's time to go. Personally, I've been ready for at least two years and still go two to go.
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Old 07-28-2013, 09:40 AM   #23
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Spanky, I'm positive you're making the right choice.......
Thanks. I believe so.

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...That is, when a mid-high level manager got into his 50's, they were given the choice of returning to technical/individual contributor roles. During my relatively long stint in Japan, I saw numerous cases of middle manager's "stepping down" and taking technical and administrative jobs. Not many stayed in the "frying pan/fire".
It's very understandable for managers wanting to change pace after years of pressure to maximize productivity out of people at an incredible pace. Managers are expected not only to work smarter but also harder than ever before.

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..I think the real key is to be ready and have no regrets when it's time to go. ..
I do not anticipate any issue to call it quits in the future.

Thanks.
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Old 07-28-2013, 09:45 AM   #24
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If you find there is too much stress, just leave... you don't need the money of you are FI. If not, you can build more of an FI cushion if you just bank/invest the additional 30%.
Thank you for sharing your thoughts. Additional cushion is not needed as my projected SWR is only 2%.
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Old 07-28-2013, 12:52 PM   #25
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Additional cushion is not needed as my projected SWR is only 2%.
Why even do the additional 2 years?
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Old 07-28-2013, 12:56 PM   #26
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Whether or not it is right really depends on each person's makeup and tolerance.

I stepped away from a managing role to a technical/individual contributor/SME role in my early 50s because I my enthusiasm for managing/mentoring was waning and my bucket for bureaucratic BS overflowed.

It worked out to be a good move in my case.
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Old 07-28-2013, 03:35 PM   #27
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No. It is not fair to yourself or your employer or your coworkers. It sounds like you already have one foot out the door.
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Old 07-28-2013, 04:04 PM   #28
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If OP decided to take the promotion and gave them two good years and decided to retire, why would you think it is unfair to the employer or co-workers?
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Old 07-28-2013, 05:04 PM   #29
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While not in engineering, my father went through a like experience. He was a stevedore. As such he had a place in the Longshoreman's union. He was the third highest man in his gang, and was their crane operator. The company they loaded for ask him to come to work for them, taking care of all their cranes. Going from the union to work for the client is known as becoming a Company Man in the stevedore trade. [as in other trades as well] There was a goodly increase in pay, and the promise of not working weekends and holidays. But he would have a set salary, not get paid by the hour. They also said he would have two full time helpers.

He took the job, but only after getting it in writing that he wouldn't loose his place in the union if it didn't work out. The company didn't keep any of their promises about hiring him helpers. He had one part time kid. Daddy was in his 50's by then, and crane maintenance is very hard work. [if any of you have ever greased your yard tractor, just imagine having several hundred feet of 3' cable to grease weekly. And that is just one crane]

He was working more hours than he had when in his old gang. And when you think about the added tax bite, the per hour wage wasn't that much better than before. After about 8 months he quite the company and went back to his old spot in the gang. Where he worked until he was 62.

Staying put until you decide to leave would be the safest course of action.
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Old 07-28-2013, 05:12 PM   #30
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I was promoted to exactly the level I wanted to be at, and stayed there for years -- the highest "individual contributor" pay grade, where the next promotion would have been into management. I never had a promotion to management offered to me, but that's just as well since I would have declined it.
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Old 07-28-2013, 05:27 PM   #31
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I guess in relation to your question I would ask if you are the kind of person who really enjoys taking on new and challenging tasks. If so, then I'd go for the promotion. If you value stability/security, then maybe just stick with what you have got while the clock counts down.
I agree with this point. Some people like to take on a challenge, others prefer to keep it simple and just do what they've been doing.
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Old 07-28-2013, 06:07 PM   #32
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Why even do the additional 2 years?
It's only an excuse -- until my youngest daughter is graduated from college.
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Old 07-28-2013, 06:17 PM   #33
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I agree with this point. Some people like to take on a challenge, others prefer to keep it simple and just do what they've been doing.
There are plenty of technical challenges and many new things to learn just to stay as an electrical or software engineer.
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Old 07-29-2013, 02:18 PM   #34
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Not just no, but hell no.

I tried managing a group of people for six months at my old company. Was my first "official" management job, and I hated it.

One thing I quickly learned was...everybody's problem is your problem when you manage them. I only want to worry about my own problems, not everybody else's.

They could double my salary and I wouldn't do it, much less when only two years from FIRE.
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Old 07-29-2013, 02:20 PM   #35
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I know that OP already expressed his/her decision, but I'd like to chime in with a "hell no" as well. Being that close to ER, and at a comfortable level of stress? No way.
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Old 07-29-2013, 02:47 PM   #36
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Just a little math for the equation evaluation.

20K (after tax) / 2080 (work hrs in a year) = $9.61/hr based on 40 hour week

If you think your efforts will require more hours/wk, adjust accordingly.

YMMV, but when I see numbers like this, I definitely fall on the no side. Just not worth the extra pressure/stress added to your life for that kinda small change. It's unfortunate, but the higher you go in salary the bigger chunk goes to taxes making it less and less attractive. Maybe for an extra $1K/week I'd consider it. But that would be more like a $75K raise.
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Old 07-29-2013, 03:28 PM   #37
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I actually faced a similar, but not exactly the same, dilemma one year ago and took the promotion: CEO knew I had a short time horizon; I thought I could actually make a bit of a difference and hopefully have; and, frankly, I am hoping retiring with an executive title will open more doors for part time consulting down the road if I choose to pursue that.

One year in: The extra money is nice but definitely not life changing; stress is of a different variety but not sure it is significantly higher or lower (although, stress and hours worked were much higher for initial several weeks with much in flux while I tried to cover both roles); hours are approximately the same now as before promotion. This has actually postponed my ER since I cannot leave in good conscience until a few remaining issues are resolved. New countdown is 6-18 months from now.
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Old 07-29-2013, 05:09 PM   #38
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This has actually postponed my ER since I cannot leave in good conscience until a few remaining issues are resolved. New countdown is 6-18 months from now.
Thanks for bring this to light. Such event is quite plausible and could potentially delay ER.
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Old 07-29-2013, 07:01 PM   #39
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I took a similar job for my last 6 years with my lifetime employer. I can honestly say these were some of the most rewarding, frustrating and stressful years of my career. One of the most negative aspects for me was seeing my former peers from a different perspective - performance reviews, bonuses, etc. and most of all the politics of management.

I would not do it.

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Old 07-29-2013, 07:45 PM   #40
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Thanks for inputs from everyone. After weighing all the pros and cons, what's right for me is to stay as an individual contributor as I really do not want additional stress and responsibilities at this stage of my life...
Though you have already decided, I'd like to add my opinion to the consensus here that you did the right thing.

Enjoy your coast down to ER, and I wish your daughter graduate with great GPA.
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