If considering a job change, you’re in good company. As priorities have shifted, many people are questioning whether their current employer’s plans will be the best fit for them.
Large-scale movement in the workforce can create exciting opportunities and inspire you to change jobs, but make sure you’re looking for a new role for the right reasons. Review both external and internal options carefully to determine what will best align with your priorities going forward. Then, position yourself as strongly as possible to pursue that direction.
Why Change Jobs Now?
Before you draft a letter of resignation, ask yourself: why now? Reflect on what is driving your need to leave, beyond the pull of making a change.
- Is your role going in a new direction that doesn’t make the best use of your skills?
- Are you experiencing burnout? Do you need more work/life balance?
- Do you feel disconnected from colleagues or the company culture overall?
- Do you want a higher salary, more meaningful/rewarding work or opportunities for advancement?
- Do you want to continue working remotely, but your employer insists otherwise?
Is Positive Change Possible Where You Are?
Once you’ve defined priorities, explore whether your current employer offers (or is willing to offer) acceptable solutions. Employees have a unique opportunity to join the conversation as companies plan out what the future of work will look like and anticipate increased turnover and hiring challenges.
Discuss specific requests with your supervisor (and in some circumstances, HR). If a simple change, like a hybrid schedule, would entice you to stay in an otherwise rewarding role, it’s worth a conversation. If an internal advancement opportunity would satisfy your need for growth in a company that you like being a part of, it’s also worth looking into. Even asking for a raise or flexible hours is fair game, but come prepared to make your case.
When asking for a change or accommodation, be reasonable and collaborative. Avoid ultimatums unless you’re ready to walk. Remember, companies are invested in retaining good talent, but they still have limitations. Reiterate your value to the company and be specific in what you need to continue as a successful, satisfied and productive employee.
Refresh Your Personal Brand For Change
If you decide to change jobs, assess your personal brand to ensure it best positions you to market yourself for new opportunities. Highlight experience, expertise and impact in the context of current goals on your resume and LinkedIn profile. Engage with content on LinkedIn that aligns with the direction you want to head in. Consider too how you introduce yourself and respond to “tell me about yourself” when networking.
Don’t Let Perfect Be The Enemy Of Good
While exploring new opportunities or improving your current work situation can be worthwhile, exciting and necessary, don’t limit your pursuit to obtaining the perfect job. It may not exist and you could miss out on very good opportunities while seeking it. When evaluating options and assessing potential fit, stay true to your priorities while being open-minded and flexible. Talk with people in your network or ask for introductions to those who can provide valuable insights to gather information beyond the surface details available in a job posting or on the company page.
Companies and workplace culture evolve over time. Whether your current position and employer are worth staying at depends on if the company and your interests still align with one another. Evaluate all options carefully and be prepared to reevaluate again — whatever you decide today is also subject to change.