Questions To Ask Yourself Before Changing Jobs
The days of working at one company for the entirety of your career have become few and far between. As mentioned in previous articles, the Bureau of Labor Statistics has found that the average worker will hold 10 different jobs before the age of 40 with that number expected to grow. This means that assuming you enter the workforce as a 22-year-old out of college, you will have a new job every 1.8 years, which on the surface might be viewed as “job-hopping.” But this is not always the case.
According to LinkedIn’s Talent Blog, young professionals are likely to change jobs three times in their first five years after graduation. While job-hopping has typically been considered a red flag in the hiring process, the trend has almost become the norm, especially for early career professionals.
If you have found yourself in a “funk” of sorts and are looking for a change of pace or scenery from your current role, Kinsey Crowley provides five questions that you should ask yourself when considering a new job. Your answers to these questions will help shape your thinking as you progress along your career.
Will I Learn Something Valuable In The New Role?
You should view changing jobs as a new learning and growth opportunity. If you have a career goal in mind and a new job will help you get closer to achieving it, then the answer to this question should be easy. When considering a new job opportunity, Crowley recommends knowing exactly what you hope to get out of it.
Do I Have A Clear Concept Of What I Will Be Doing?
Sometimes a job title and expectations don’t align. In the sports world, for example, being a sports marketing assistant in a collegiate athletic department might sound fascinating, but outsiders often don’t see all that goes on behind the scenes: rolling t-shirts and promotional posters, dressing as the mascot, etc.
In order to get a better idea of what you will actually be doing in a role, you can ask for an example of what the daily duties are during the interview process. If there are “other duties as assigned,” be aware of that and ask what they could entail. Leaving your comfort zone at your current job might be a great career test, but if you don’t do well with ambiguity, having a clear idea of what to expect in your new role will help you decide whether or not to make the leap. The worst case scenario would be leaving your job for what you thought were greener pastures, only to realize that it is nothing like you expected it to be.
Does This Job Expand On The Responsibilities That I Enjoy In My Current Job?
Chances are you aren’t looking to make a lateral movement in your career unless you are truly miserable and unfulfilled in your current role. When considering a change, look for opportunities that will teach you new skills and expose you to different challenges. If you enjoy certain aspects of your current job, there are sure to be other jobs that allow you to continue building and expanding upon these competencies. It is one thing if you are looking for a completely new challenge and change of pace, but more often than not, when looking for new jobs, job seekers will try to stick with a certain component that they enjoy.
Does This Job Improve Upon What I Dislike About My Current Job?
Why do you want to leave your current job? Employees usually don’t just up and leave a stable position if there aren’t aspects of it that makes them unhappy. Reasons range from corporate culture, management, or direction. Certain jobs aren’t meant for everyone, and different people thrive in different environments. Pinpointing what you don’t like about your current job will help guide your search for new opportunities.
You can get a good sense of whether a new opportunity will be better than your current role during the interview process. After all, an interview is not just for the company to decide whether or not you’re a good fit for the role, but also for you to determine if you can see yourself in the role.
Do I Think The Interview Went Well?
Many people think that the interview is just a test of your qualifications to be successful in the job discussed. However, a major component of the interview process is determining whether or not you will fit within the company’s culture, and vice versa. If you don’t get a good feeling from the people you interview with, or can’t see yourself thriving in the role/culture, it usually isn’t a good sign.
Changing jobs and ambiguity go hand-in-hand. It is an often-uncomfortable situation leaving one company for a new opportunity. If you have found yourself in this position and are considering making a career change, make sure you ask yourself these five questions to guide your search.