Updated: Nov 17, 2021
It's true, the world really is full of choices and decisions out there for you to consider! Yesterday, we looked over 5 reasons to stay in your current role. Today we’ll look at the contrasting viewpoints – for what five reasons are people out there considering a career move? For starters, let’s quickly run through yesterday’s key points, essentially in reverse.
Number one was Self-actualization; if you’re seeking something more meaningful than what you do everyday, looking to "off the scorecard” goals to stay motivated, or the money just isn’t doing it for you anymore, you could need to consider a switch. Number two was Career Arc – is there a future in front of you where you stand? If not, could it be signaling a time to take matters into your own hands? With number three, we addressed Continued Ascendance, which essentially boils down to the opportunity cost of separating or slowing advancement; what would miss out on if you left now? In our fourth bullet, we looked at People. People make up one of the most critical aspects of work; we ask ourselves, do we like the flag we fly, is this my actual tribe, if I didn’t work here would these people ask me to lunch much less hold the door for me? If the people around you, or where you next hope to be in the next few years, aren’t anyone you’d like to associate with or don’t have skills or attributes you hope to acquire, well. . .let’s just say this one is a done-deal. Lastly is Work Life and we’ll address that toward the close of today’s post.
Because here’s what’s at stake: an economic downturn looms; projections as to when vary greatly. When times get even tougher, which they will, are the people to your left and your right, and most importantly, above you, folks you want to have to jump in a foxhole with?
#1 Personal Wellness
How can any company health and bottom line improve if the staff is getting stretched to the max, the customer complaints are at all-time highs and the teammates are taking their work lives into their own hands? Employees have been marginalized by the pandemic, and no industry has been spared. To simplify – if your sleep is being affected, if work is taking a toll on your diet, or if anxiety feels higher than normal or dread has set in, you could already be experiencing the burnout that comes from this type of overworking situation. If your day-to-day workflows are affecting your mental health, physical health or spiritual health, your personal wellness could presently be compromised. These are situations where making a change could literally be a life-saving move.
I realize this doesn’t apply to everyone reading, but, based on feedback when discussing this with my network, the topic felt impactful enough to leave in. Look if you’re taking it out on your significant other, spouse, kids, other family members, etc., don’t be afraid to reach out for help. It could seriously be time to consider a switch. In a fairly recent synopsis of study I read, it was evaluated that long hours worked at the office don’t materially affect children, or their relationship with their parents. Honest hard-work at times is understood! Even by kids. However, the study did indicate that children of parents who were said to “hate” their jobs, were, more statistically, likely to be bullies. Let that sit in for a quick second. How can we wonder where the bullying epidemic is coming from, and then place blame everywhere EXCEPT ourselves or the organizations that tolerate poor treatment of employees? Consider an urgent jump if you find yourself in this situation.
Has your social contact been reduced to Zoom or Webex? Are you only interacting with others during work meetings or semi-optional office days? Is the time you used to spend relaxing or intimate with your partner now being consumed by PowerPoints and late-night emails? Is your relationship with the person closest to you compromised by an escape from your reality? Unfortunately, in the pandemic, many have reportedly turned to unhealthy habits to cope. If you’re becoming harder to be around, or seeing your real relationships disintegrate when you reflect on the past 18 months, moving on is more than worth a thought.
#4 Optimal Conditions for Change
Know anyone hiring out there? Of course you do. Jobs coming back is the best recent thing to happen to the economy. Yes, inflation is upon us and looms larger depending on your viewpoint, but real wages are on the rise as finance teams across the globe are approving open requisitions right and left. The fluidity of the US Labor Force is on full display with career changes happening all over. Signing bonuses are a thing now! And that’s just one set of options that you may have been considering. . .Adult “gap years” are not altogether uncommon, nor is going back to school, re-educating or investing in yourself. Small business pursuit is exploding. Being able to offer a service or make a product has never felt so tangible, combined with the allure of self-employment. New revenue streams (TikTok, YouTube), Etsy accounts to make/sell, Handshake, Shopify and countless other ways to monetize a hobby or craft, or launch a fun side-hustle, are very real with extreme low barriers to entry and simple to differentiate within. Very few are going to make it on Shark Tank! But so many could either do these, or, leverage their financial position to create even more conventional passive revenue streams such as real estate or property management, etc. If the benefit for what you could achieve or earn is higher than what you currently experience, put thought into what you should be doing instead.
#5 Work Life
The equilibrium between work and life, if off-kilter, can be a beckoning clue, a canary in the coal mine. Being grateful for what we have is always key, and as mentioned in the previous post, do note that the grass is not always greener. But accepting some risk for potentially massive reward (changing jobs, careers, companies, or something different) is worth examining if you can leverage the moment to achieve a better Work Life. If something is out of balance, do your homework and learn what is out there. Something amazing could be in store for you!
Your Work Life should be helping you point to, and plot a journey towards, financial freedom, and above all else, be balanced with some fair modicum of personal time or space to reflect, which ideally should be longer than the 36 hours before the start of your next shift or office day when the weekend hits. Along with a proper Work Life comes the ability to achieve the other most important areas of your life, whatever those are to you personally. We don’t recommend jumping without a net, or making a change without a robust and mathematically safe plan in almost all cases, and rather favor the creation of a soft landing (in general, never leave a job without a job so to speak), getting something off the ground with a spouse or business partner, before making a move. Our advice comes to down to something Jon Acuff says: "If you look at a "risky" entrepreneur, or a "risky" business person, behind it is so many checks and balances, so much deliberate thought, so much intentionality." In short, every risk-taker should be a pretty unexciting box-checker who's run the numbers.
- Matt Holmes