In today’s job market securing a position before leaving is crucial and job-hopping is the new norm.
But how do you know it’s time to start looking elsewhere when the grass isn’t always greener on the other side?
Financial need should be one of the main criteria, but logic aside, here are some telltale signs the end is near:
1. You Dread Going To Work
Emotions are like the check engine light on your car dashboard. They indicate when something is wrong. For some lack of alignment with the vision of the company can be the deal breaker, while passion is the widely used qualitative measurement (on a scale of 1 – 10 how much do you love the company you work for?) As I wrote in an earlier post, you either drink the Kool-Aid or you don’t. If you score a 6 or below it may be a matter of when, not if you leave.
2. You Don’t Feel Valued
Value comes in different forms: respect, appreciation, compensation, etc. Being fairly paid is self-explanatory (and normally tied to your self-worth), but the “feeling” is tied to your direct manager. People leave managers, not companies. True story.
You may interact with your co-workers more frequently, but how you are treated by your boss is the thermometer. Feeling respected is being heard. Don’t expect all your ideas to be implemented, but if they’re all discarded you simply stop caring. Using the car analogy, value is the emotional fuel you run on at work.
When full, it’s easy to brush off apparent challenges.
When running on empty, minor offenses can be the straw that breaks the camel’s back.
Value determines longevity.
3. No Growth Opportunities
Professional development ranked higher than pay for Millennials in job surveys. That’s because the corporate ladder has been turned sideways where lateral movement to another company can be more attractive than promotion.
Culture is the driver for individual growth. Using Zappos as an example, it’s the core values that shape behaviors, not mission statements. Investment in employees can be risky because they can leave, but without it you have little chance of people staying past a year. Smart companies use both internal and external resources to champion this cause. If Human Resources is overloaded, hiring an outside trainer or consultant who specializes in learning and development can be the better route. Establishing a connection then challenging comfort zones is the intersection of growth.
Moving on has more to do with how you feel treated than it does anything rational. Life is too short to settle for mediocrity. If you care about making an impact you’ll look outside your current organization for more attractive options. Remember, the best candidates are employed and there’s never anything wrong with looking for something better.