When should you change your job?

 

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Every year nearly 10 million people change their jobs in India. Recruitment consultants, Job advertisements, Job boards and Recruitment-focused Social networks thrive on this phenomenon. Job change is one of the most stressful experiences in human life and quite a few of these 10 million events in India do not necessarily go the way they are planned.

On one hand, it is a leap of faith to the situation that one wants to be in. People want to explore the unbeaten path, get out of their comfort zone and adventure into a new territory. Some others want to get away from their current state of being into something unknown with the optimism that the future will be better. At times, it is in very little control of the individual such as an exigency in the family or a change in the workplace due to which one has to move on. In any of these situations, one wonders if we have a marker that can tell us if it is the right time to look for a change. During the last two decades of my work in the recruitment industry, I have noticed several changes. Given today’s socio-economic environment, I think there are a few aspects which can be used for self-assessment to decide if this is the right time to change the job.

You are not important any more.

My interactions with the boss, the co-workers and the members of the team tell me if I am playing an important role in turning the wheel of my organization. When my interactions are very infrequent, limited to just a few casual conversation and seemingly unimportant transactions in a day, I know that my presence doesn’t make an impact; my role isn’t being valued; most likely, my organization considers my role to be on the fringe. My boss doesn’t invest serious energy with me in my development; the opportunities for me to learn new skills, work on challenging tasks and grow into bigger roles are limited. That’s the right time to quit!

You accrue some negative energies each day.

My experiences at work can be invigorating, inspiring, learning, insightful, being trusted, being supported, recognized and so on. These are all positive feelings which set us on a virtuous cycle. At the same time, we experience irritation, anger, hatred, shock, rejection, humiliation, being ignored, discredited and so on. On the whole, taking everything into account, if the overall feel is negative, that’s the time to put down your papers and move on!

Your organization is very different from what you want it to be.

Like a human being grows in age, an organization does and undergoes change as if it is a living being. The values and beliefs change; the way a situation is viewed now could be very different from the way it was viewed in the past. There is a continuous transformation which keeps happening in the organization. Some of these changes may not to be to my taste; some may not bother me; and some could be very welcoming. So, I take a pause once in a while and assess if this is the workplace I feel proud of. I need to think if I feel fulfilled working alongside my colleagues at work. If not, I must change my job.

And, of course, there are a few other brass tacks!

At times, for reasons beyond your control. Your employer runs into a trouble; there is restructuring in the organization; your contract comes to an end; the industry sector where you are working is experiencing a downturn; there are priorities at home that clash with those of your employer. In such situations, you face challenges related to your earnings and future prospects. So, you have to look for an opportunity that sounds more promising than what you have at hand.

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Do you want to sell sugar water for the rest of your life?

Do you want to sell sugar water for the rest of your life, or do you want to come with me and change the world?” Steve Jobs said to Pepsi executive John Sculley to lure him to Apple.

There are opportunities which head-hunters bring to you. There are many aspects other than the potential earnings associated with a new opportunity. One must evaluate them carefully. A new job becomes the single-most important aspect of one’s active life for 3 years at the least unless it is for a fixed period of time. Moreover, this decision determines the future innings of one’s work life in many ways.

Change is constantly happening. We must welcome them at the right time. Else, one loses the opportunities to live a bright future. We should undertake this change at the right time!

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