Feel it may be time for a change but not sure whether to risk leaving a steady job? Taking a leap into the unknown can be harder when costs of living are rising. However, being content with our work makes a big difference to the quality of our lives. This can make deciding whether to jump ship a real dilemma.
We’ll help you evaluate how seriously to take your work woes so that you can make the right decision. Taking time to consider your career goals and next move will not only make you a more attractive candidate, but will increase your chances of finding a role where you’ll be satisfied.
Lack of Challenge
Do you feel like you can fulfil the requirements of your current job on autopilot? Many people feel like they have started to plateau when they have been in the same role for three years or more.
In a low economic climate you may feel that lack of challenge isn’t sufficient reason to leave. If neglected for too long, a lack of challenge can negatively affect you in terms your motivation and ability to perform, which in turn is likely to affect your attractiveness as a candidate for internal career progression.
If you are otherwise happy with your current company try asking for more responsibility or more demanding projects. However, if there are no prospects for change or advancement with your current employer, it’s wise to start looking for an alternative. Don’t feel that a lack of learning opportunities isn’t sufficient reason to make a change. It is new challenges that help us grow and develop a rewarding career.
If you are struggling to live on your salary, then do some research into the average pay for your role. You can easily find this information on job review sites like Glassdoor.
Research will also help you learn about pay ceilings for your particular role. You may find that what you want to earn is unlikely at your level of responsibility. If this is the case, then it could be time to aim higher, particularly if you are over-qualified. Look to make better use of your skills in a more senior role which offers better financial prospects.
If your research suggests other employers are offering more, then it’s worth negotiating a pay rise. Be ready to sell yourself and explain the value you add to your employer. You’ll be expected to justify why the company should award you with an increase in pay.
If you have already been refused a pay rise several times then consider this a red flag. You may be forced to move if you are faced with rising living costs and no prospect of pay increases. Make a list of employers who offer good salaries, start revamping your CV and make some introductions. In addition to increasing your bank balance, feeling we are paid fairly for our work helps us stay motivated.
Seeking more Meaningful work
Recent world events caused many people to revaluate the way they live their lives. When you consider that the average person spends around a third of their lifetime working, it’s becoming increasingly important to many to feel a connection to, or for their careers to have a sense of purpose. If your dread of Monday mornings is less about your environment and more about a lack of enthusiasm for what you’re doing, then it’s time to start planning for a change.
If your role is applicable to many sectors, such as marketing or sales, then moving industries could provide the sense of purpose you’re looking for. Consider your own values and passions. For instance, if you are passionate about protecting the environment or want to help others, then an opportunity within a leading eco-friendly company or with a charity might give you the sense of purpose you are seeking. It is important to thoroughly research this and find out if you decide to return to your industry, for example, IT, that you are just as appealing if you are coming from a charitable organisation, relative to another IT company. In many cases you won’t be, so it maybe easy to move in one direction, but not so easy to come back, if you later decide you have made a mistake.
If you know, deep down, that you want to do something completely different, take action by doing research and identifying steps towards this goal. You may benefit from investing in some career coaching. However, this article by Forbes gives some great advice:
‘Before you make any changes… think about every job you've ever had -- what you loved and hated about it, and what you learned from it and what you might want to leverage going forward.’
Your Work isn’t Appreciated
A recent article by Forbes found that a huge 79% of employees cited a lack of appreciation as their main reason for leaving.
Lack of appreciation can take many forms. Many employees express feeling a lack of appreciation when employers expect staff to work unpaid extra hours. Frequently being expected take on duties outside your role without recognition are other factors which can make workers feel taken for granted.
Being overlooked for pay rises or promotions can also make us feel undervalued. If you consider you have consistently performed to a high standard, try organising a formal review. Ask what steps you need to take to receive a promotion, and organise a follow-up when you’ve been able to deliver on these.
If you have sought feedback on your performance and are still getting overlooked, get prepared to find yourself a new role where there is a clear path to progression. Don’t become demotivated by spending too much time in a position that doesn’t value employee performance. There are plenty of companies out there who will recognise and reward your contribution.
Toxic Work Environment
According to a 2021 study by MIT, a toxic workplace culture is the number one factor pushing employee resignations. Workplace toxicity has become an umbrella term for a range of negative employee experiences, ranging from spying and harassment, and workplace bullying to more common problems like poor employee / management relations.
Not getting along with your boss can have a serious effect on job satisfaction and your potential for progression. To be effective leaders, bosses should be capable of motivating us and be someone we can trust and go to for support. If a boss micromanages and underestimates your abilities or constantly takes credit for your ideas and hard work then this is bound to affect your motivation.
If your attempts to form a good relationship with your boss have been fruitless it’s worth taking action before this affects your opportunities for career growth. You are certainly not alone or to blame for this situation: according to Gallup’s State of the Workplace study, (cited in a recent article by the Harvard Business Review) ‘half of all employees have quit jobs at some point in their careers in order to get away from their bosses.’
Similarly, you should not feel any qualms about looking for a new job if your employers turn a blind eye to negative workplace relationships due to gossiping, poor communication, avoidance or even bullying. Unless the company’s leadership recognise and take action on these work culture problems, you are better off somewhere else.
Work is Negatively Affecting your Health
Negative workplace cultures are just one way that your job can take its toll on your stress levels and mental health. Unmanageable workloads or unrealistic expectations from leadership are also frequently blamed for ‘burnout’ symptoms in employees. Whatever the underlying cause, if you feel your work is affecting your health then it’s time to take action.
No job is worth risking your well-being for. Also, allowing yourself to get to the point where you no longer care if you get fired is self-damaging. Act instead, by first taking stock of what it is about the role you want to avoid when looking for a new employer. Believe in yourself and your ability to improve your situation and find a more suitable role.
A Reputable Recruiter can support you through your Job Change
If some of these warning signs struck a chord with you, but you the thought of conducting a job search is overwhelming, consider getting some extra support.
A experienced recruiter can take the hard-work out of finding a rewarding new role. As well as saving you time and effort, quality recruiters, like those at Wireless Mobile International Search, can support you through the entire process, from updating your resume to interview coaching.
If you are seeking a mid or senior level position in executive sales, sales engineering, marketing, product management, business development or project management contact us now to find out how we can help and support you finding your next ideal role.