It’s OK to change jobs if you do these 3 things first

It’s OK to change jobs if you do these 3 things first
December 14, 2020 Linda Murray
In Career, Executive, Mindset, Strategy, Success

Bored, unchallenged, unhappy?

Work not exciting you the way it once did?

The idea of changing jobs is both exciting and stressful. You probably feel a sense of guilt that you want to move on along with a regret which comes from loyalty to your team.

It IS OK to move on.

Changing jobs is a sensible career move when you’ve gone as far as you can go (or want to go) in your current role.

Before I go on, let me talk about the guilt aspect. This is a topic that comes up time and time again, especially with my female clients. They feel as though they are being disloyal by choosing to move on to a new role. You need to remind yourself that accepting a job is not a lifetime commitment. Today, changing employers and careers is an accepted part of our working lives. Your parents might have worked at the same place for 40 years, but you don’t have to. Recent surveys found that 48% of the Australians questioned said they have been in the role for less than two years and 21%, had been in their role for less than a year.

Changing jobs or careers lets you stretch yourself and your comfort zones. In the process, you’ll gain new skills and a broader view of your industry. You’ll become more valuable to which ever organisation you next work for.

Before you announce your intention to leave, do these three things.

Assess what you want from your next role and why you want it

Spend some time working out what you want from your job. What are you looking for? More freedom, more creativity, better hours, a management opportunity or perhaps something less stressful? It’s simple: if you don’t know what you need, you can’t find it.

Plan your exit

Don’t quit on the spot, especially if you’re in a senior position! Most workplaces require a period of notice so know what your contract states and give advance notice of your intentions. You’ll maintain a good relationship with your old company. You’ll also feel comfortable about the way you’ve handled the process. Look beyond the inconveniences and discomfort and focus on preparing yourself for the future.

It’s important to finish the project you and your team are working on or find someone who can competently take over. At the senior leadership level, it can take a while to find a replacement, so use the time to ready yourself for moving on. It’s not good for your reputation to drop a project, nor is it good for your team. Prepare to move on but tie up all those loose ends first.

Our brains have an inbuilt ‘recency bias’ meaning we remember our most recent experiences of a person.How you handle the exit process will be highly influential on the lasting memory you leave with your employer. Go above and beyond and exceed their expectations to make sure it’s a great memory.

Give yourself a timeline

You don’t have to resign as soon as you’ve made the decision to leave. Consider external factors such as income changes, family events and anything that will affect your ability to apply for or start a new job. If you know you have big expenses looming, it might be a good idea to stay where you are until they are covered. Alternatively, if you’ve heard that a role you want is soon to be vacant, work around that. You might even want to allow for a short holiday break between the jobs. Plan for it; don’t wing it.

You can see, I’m encouraging you to develop a strategy for making this change. Having a career strategy means you’re more likely to build a career you enjoy. It keeps you focused on the positives rather than the negatives which have influenced your decision to move on.

Leaving your job can be the right thing to do. If you need help with planning the change, contact me and let’s talk.

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