How do you know when you’re ready to switch jobs? Many considerations need to factor into making this decision, ranging from whether you plan to be in the same industry five years from now to examining your financial situation and any benefits you may currently be relying on from your current employer.
Making the decision to switch jobs requires careful thought about the future of your career and overall life. Before making any sudden moves, consider these pros and cons for switching jobs.
Pro: Growth Opportunities
Let’s say you have been in the same role at your company for several years. You have learned a lot and received some title changes and promotions but hit a ceiling for professional growth in this department.
If you find yourself in a position where you are unable to grow anymore and have been doing your work somewhat on autopilot, you may look into working at another company that offers you more development opportunities and a challenging workload.
Con: You Don’t Have Savings
Employees who are living paycheck to paycheck may exercise caution when switching jobs. The general recommendation would be not to leave your employer unless you have another job lined up.
Before switching jobs, or actively interviewing for new ones, make it a habit to build up savings or an emergency fund. Automate a portion of your paycheck to go into savings or an emergency fund. This creates a safety net in the event switching jobs does not turn out to be the best bet. It also takes time to find a new job, so you may allocate this time appropriately toward a much-needed financial cushion.
Con: You’re Switching Jobs Just for Money
Switching jobs often can be one of the quickest ways to receive a pay raise. While an increase in wages is always a good thing, it can be a detriment if you are doing it only for more money.
While receiving a fair salary is a critical aspect of switching jobs, an increased paycheck should not be the only factor taken into consideration. Other aspects you need to consider include the type of work you will be doing, how this new company aligns with your personal values, the company culture, your benefits package, where you will work and work-life balance.
Con: You Haven’t Talked to Anyone About This Decision
Don’t switch jobs without talking to the people you trust. Some of these people, like your partner, need to know when and how you plan on switching jobs, as this will impact your household income. If you don’t know what to do, talking about it with a trusted friend, partner, parent or mentor can be helpful.
Do not, however, talk to your boss or even co-workers about switching jobs. The last thing you want is to inadvertently start office gossip about how you’re planning to leave the company and be approached by your manager for an explanation.
Pro: You Know What You Want Long-Term
Sometimes leaving a job, especially if you have held it for a long time and are a seasoned pro at what you do, is a really good decision. You’re not necessarily switching jobs as much as you are advancing your career. You’ve thought about what you want extensively, researched companies where you can bring your skills to the table and whose mission aligns with your own, and you are ready to keep growing and learning.
The only real difference is you’re switching to a new company.
If you feel confident about what you want and have a solid plan and savings in place, now is the time to make the move forward. Don’t worry too much about the initial learning curve as you make the switch. Think back to your early days in your last long-term role and trust yourself to go through the training process and learn the ropes as you go.
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