There’s been a great deal of movement within the workforce over the past 2 or 3 years. Issues have been constant, like the pandemic, remote versus office schedules, school remote learning, a changing economy and updated work skills. These have all added to questions of whether to accept a new job, stay with the current job, or maybe you made a mistake when you changed jobs recently. Some decisions of the past were valid at the time, but maybe not now. Have you made a bad decision?
Two factors need to be addressed as you plan for the future: First, new skills or experiences are needed for a future move which were not accessible to you over the past few years. Second, pay increases to not only catch up with inflation, but make up for the performance reviews or promotions that were not available to you. You may be in a job that is no longer satisfying, or a job that is below your potential contribution. It’s time to assess where you are, need to be, then how to get to your longer-term goal.
A Gallup survey, “State of the Global Workplace: 2022” cites that 20% of the workforce are miserable at work. A study by Workforce Institute says that about 40% of American workers wish that someone should have warned them not to take their current job. A 2022 study by FlexJobs identify the number one reason workers quit their job is due to a toxic culture, then low pay, or poor management. If so, it’s time to take action.
STEPS TO CONSIDER
- Prepare financially. If you leave or lose your job you want to be prepared for the time it will take to find the right job. The right job takes more time than finding any job. The minimum time? 6 months for a sound job search with a compelling resume. The average time? Probably 9 months, depending upon many factors like pay, skills, level and age.
- Assess the marketplace. Through personal contacts, websites and Glassdoor.com get a fix on where you stand to the current open jobs, requirements and where you fall short.
- Create and implement a plan to supplement your resume to become competitive
- Create a profile. The “must have’s” are non-negotiable factors of a potential job that you will not compromise, like a pay level of $X, a team-oriented company, or a consumer product manufacturer. The “like to have’s” are items that would make the job more attractive to you (3 weeks’ vacation, travel of less than 25%). Develop a list of items that are unacceptable to you and will avoid (an autocratic boss, a job in New York City).
- Begin matching potential job opportunities against your “must have” and “like to have” list. If you’re truly honest about your lists and you thoroughly screen the potential companies to interview, your chances of making a mistake are dramatically reduced.
Pick your next boss carefully. It should be someone you can learn from, trust and respect.
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