Is it Time for a Job Change?

Jul 6, 2015

Change is inevitable. Sometimes you see it coming. And sometimes it blindsides you with a kick in the gut as evidenced in this true story of one of my friends. He was an engineer and was very satisfied with his job. Then one day he came home from work and realized something was missing in his life. It was his furniture. And his new laptop. His 60” flat screen had been pried down leaving gaping holes in the wall. His whole house had been cleaned out, leaving only his clothes hanging in the closet. Yep! His wife and all his belongings had moved on without him.

At that moment, his phone rang. It was a recruiter asking if he might be interested in moving to Greenville, SC to work at the new BMW facility. “Might as well,” he said. “It won’t take long to pack.” My friend took this as an omen that it was time for a job change.

When to Change Jobs

I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today? And whenever the answer has been ‘No’ for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.” ~ Steve Jobs

As a recruiter, I help people who want to make a career change. When we talk, I want you to be completely honest with me. I need to know why you are interested in making a job change. I’m looking for a perfect fit for you and your career. When I get a call from one of my clients, I’ll know just who to call for that perfect fit.

Salary Too Low

I understand that salary is a consideration, but generally it is not the major motivator. Frankly, if you are only motivated by money, then I am concerned about considering you as a future potential candidate. I know there are always other companies that may come along and offer you more. Under those circumstances, it will be difficult for my client to retain you long-term.

Feeling Stuck – No Room for Growth

One of the most common reasons people change jobs is for career advancement. You might look up one day and realize that your current firm does not offer much promotional opportunity. If you feel you are stuck in your current job and can’t grow, then yes, it’s probably time to move on.

No Challenge or Excitement

Closely related is the idea of professional challenge. Often, candidates describe being in a vegetative state. Their current job isn’t challenging and they go through the motions with nothing exciting to do. A characteristic of top talent is that they enjoy solving problems and take pride in their accomplishments. If your position isn’t giving you this opportunity to excel, then it’s probably time to change jobs.

Not Feeling Appreciated

Some candidates tell me they do not feel appreciated. The company just expects outstanding performance day after day but doesn’t acknowledge or appreciate it. You may have a great compensation package, but at the end of the day a fat paycheck doesn’t give you a warm fuzzy feeling.

Poor Management

Another common reason I hear is that people disagree with management decisions. Often it’s an accumulation of little decisions and policy changes that add up to big stress in the workplace. If you find you don’t like the direction management is taking, it may be time for a job change.

Should I Change Jobs?

When in doubt, don’t!” ~ Benjamin Franklin

As a recruiter, I certainly won’t try to persuade you to make a change if you are happy with your current job. You don’t want to make a move and then look back and realize that you were much better off before. Consider the common reasons people want to stay with their current employer.

Challenged and Engaged

Do you hop out of bed every morning, eager to get to work? Are you totally engaged and are you challenged by the work you do? Then, you may want to stay put. If you love the work you do and find it rewarding, you probably aren’t looking to change jobs.

Hard to Leave Your Friends

Employers try very hard to encourage a culture of friendship and fellowship. Companies know that it is easy to leave your job, but hard to leave your friends. If you work in a supportive environment and interact every day with people you enjoy, then you may not want to make a job change.

Family Doesn’t Want to Move

Would your family mind if you changed companies? Your spouse and children have to be consulted. If they are involved in social activities with the families of your coworkers, then your family may not support a job change. If relocation is required, it may not be a good time for them to leave the area. If this is the case, it may not be the right time to change jobs.

Supportive Network

Do you trust your employer? Can you count on your company to understand and support you through good times and bad? If you feel the company is secure and you have a safe place there, you may want to think twice about it being time for a job change.

Time to Take a New Direction

You might be asking yourself, “Should I change jobs?” Today’s workplace is different. People don’t necessarily work their way up the career ladder. In most cases, they transfer through several companies seeking positions of increasing responsibility. They set a career goal and carefully map a way to reach their target.

When is it time to change jobs? You’ll know when the time is right. Consider all the factors discussed above. Be sure you change for the right reasons. Make a list of pros and cons. Gather all the information you need to make an informed decision.

And when it’s time to take a new direction, give us a call!

About the Author

Charlie Kimmel

As President and CEO, Charlie has dedicated his 25+ year career to executive search at Kimmel & Associates. Charlie began his career at Kimmel & Associates in 1990 as a Recruiter. In 1993, he graduated with honors from the University of North Carolina at Asheville, where he received a BA in History.

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