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4 Job-Change Mistakes People Make

Job Change Mistakes

Research has it that the average worker will switch jobs 6 times in his/her entire career endeavour; obviously, taking a different turn in one’s career is not very uncommon. There are several reasons people decide to switch their career knob- either for career advancement, avoiding job dissatisfaction or just job hopping; changing jobs may not seem a bad idea after all but there are several things people rarely pay attention to before deciding a job or career change.

A research carried out by Boris Groyberg and Robin Abrahams- both associates at the Harvard Business School- revealed very common mistakes people make in the job-change process. The survey covered more than 500 executives across 50 industries in 40 countries and HR heads in 15 Multinational companies.

The Job-Change mistakes include the following:

Mistake 1: Inadequate research

Often impelled by the need to settle bills and earn a living or simply avoid waiting too long doing a job search, many job candidates fail to do quality research on the companies and industries they are to work in; consequently, they miss important factors that determine job satisfaction like the specific functions required in a role, the companies’ cultural fit and how it affects their role, talent/skill, values or personality and company’s performance assessment methods.

Mistake 2: Leaving their job for more money

The topic of money being important for daily survival undoubtedly overrides other important factors influencing a job change. According to the research, many job candidates claim to have money rank fourth on their priority list but jump on any job that offers more money for a similar role. This impedes Job candidates from looking out for more information and also deciding what other things non-monetary packages can compensate for a lower pay. Small wonder many employees complain about experiencing job dissatisfaction despite the mouth-watering salary they receive.

Mistake 3: Making moves under pressure

Many employees are recurrently unhappy with their present job positions; they make frantic efforts to get out. The co-workers are unfriendly, the boss is a devil’s incarnate, the organisation has nothing good to offer; and so candidates jump on any new job offer not considering the possibility of the next job being the worst career step they’ll ever take. Not only does this make them do poor research, they also (to their detriment) often miss out on available opportunities within their present organisation.

Mistake 4: Impractical measures and decisions

The research showed that many job candidates are unrealistic about their skills, prospects, salary expectations and the levels of impact they intend to make; and by having an excessively optimistic view of themselves, fail to admit being a part of the problem when they begin experiencing job dissatisfaction; rather, they are quick to shift blames on the organisation believing they give more than what is required in their role and the organisation is under-utilising their skills or not giving them adequate opportunities to explore those skills.

Suggestions for Managing a Job Change

  • Do not think short term: Rather than rashly deciding to leave an unbearable environment, think instead to search for a more comfortable work environment (they are two different things). Consider what benefits you’ll accrue overtime in your present job position, be wary to look out for immediate results.
  • Is this company a good fit for you? Getting core information about a new job is extremely important to help you make smart decisions, ensure to do an exhaustive research on the next job, company/organisation while you are bearing up under unfavourable circumstances in your current position; the outcomes will sure outweigh the present pains.
  • Groyberg and Abrahams suggest you ask recruiters tough questions during interviews to get clues on what their corporate culture is like. Find out what the hidden expectations are in the job. Find out who your potential employers are and the ways you can best work with them, get wind of the potential skills you can acquire in the new job and get as much inside information as you can about the job and the organisation as a whole.
  • Consider seeking a different role within your current organisation. You are probably experiencing a career rut and perhaps will find working in a different department more fulfilling.
  •  You probably aren’t the only employee experiencing setbacks in your current organisation, observe and reach out to colleagues having similar experiences; find out how they manage in such situations. Ask questions about yourself, find out what your co-workers think of you and start working on the things you can to help facilitate a more friendly working environment.
  • Device several means to make your work more interesting: work and hang out with a different set of people, take up more challenging responsibilities and engage in fun activities outside work.
  •  Consider the non-monetary benefits in both your present job and the new job; decide which one you are more comfortable with. Also consider the sacrifices required and to what extent the respective job disadvantages might affect you- your present job ‘A’ may pay less but gives you more time while the new job ‘B’ may pay more but demand 60% more of your time.

What other job change mistakes should be avoided in a job search? Please share your thoughts in the section below.

Reference Link: HBR Press- 5 ways to bungle a job change

Nathan Jeffery
Notification Bell