As the global workforce becomes more transitory in nature, it is not uncommon for workers to change their jobs every two to three years. Here are 10 reasons why you might be considering a new position:
1. Lack of a challenge
In theory, we all claim to want an easy life at work, but spending every day in a slow-paced environment can induce a sense of boredom and leave you feeling uninspired and unmotivated.
The ideal balance is a job that takes you out of your comfort zone around 20 per cent of the time; constant pressure and deadlines will only result in burnout. If you are suffering from chronic boredom at work, it may be time to consider a move.
2. You want to learn more
The beginning of a new job is always a learning curve. The most recent research suggests that after three years, most professionals have mastered their current role and are eager for a new challenge.
Employers who value their staff have career development policies in place to help them to evolve in their career. Eager workers seeking a new opportunity that is not available in their current role or company often move to a new company to ensure their skills remain up to date.
3. A difficult boss (or colleagues)
At some point, every worker encounters the difficult boss — the one who will criticise to extremes and make work life a misery. If that unhappiness affects your ability to do your job or undermines your sense of well-being, it may be time move on.
In this case, it is essential to identify which of your boss’s personality traits are the most disconcerting. Is it poor communication or a general negative attitude towards your work?
If you fail to identify these characteristics before moving, you may find yourself in a similar situation with a future manager. The same principles apply with hostile co-workers.
4. Increased earning opportunities
Is your salary competitive? While it’s not all about money, the promise of a raise and improved career prospects are justifiable reasons to leave your present role.
By changing jobs frequently, professionals can often keep their skills up to date and increase their salary significantly compared to staying in situ.
If you have worked hard to get to where you are today and network within your industry, the chances are you will be noticed by other organisations looking to recruit the best talent. Review their potential and ensure it correlates with your long-term career strategy.
5. Your current employer does not appreciate you
If your best ideas are pinched by your employers or colleagues who express no gratitude for your innovation, it could be time to move on. There will be other employers out there who will value your enthusiasm and contribution to the company.
6. Life change
From time to time, professionals change jobs due to a change in their personal circumstances, such as relocation, marriage, health reasons or to spend time with their family.
As your career evolves, your priorities will change with it. What may have seemed so important at the beginning of your working life — for example, working long hours — may not seem so important at a later stage.
If your job no longer suits your personal circumstances, it may be time for a change.
7. Your job focuses on your weaknesses
Ideally, you should be working in a role that allows you to play to your strengths. If you realise that your job is mainly focused on areas of weakness — excessive administrative duties for a sales-focused professional, for example — discuss this with your employer at the earliest opportunity.
Explain how you believe your skills can benefit the company more in a slightly different role. If there isn’t a suitable opening and you feel like a square peg in a round hole, it’s probably time to look elsewhere.
8. To become an entrepreneur
Many dream of it, but few choose to pursue their goal of working for themselves. With long-term security in the job market becoming a thing of the past, increasing numbers of workers are opting to take a self-employed role or set up their own business.
9. The company is unstable
When company profits tumble and a two-year pay freeze is announced, this is often a time for employees to look around for a more stable employer.
Don’t instantly jump ship unless you are left with no alternative; take your time and research available opportunities. Don’t leave one struggling employer for another only to find yourself in a similar situation a year down the line.
10. Downsizing or restructuring
Your company is restructuring and you are likely to be made redundant. The prospect of losing a job forces people to review their current career and the alternatives open to them. If personal finances allow, some will often take the opportunity to retrain for an alternative career or become self-employed, particularly older workers who find it harder to secure new employment after losing their jobs.
If you can identify closely with two or more reasons in this list, perhaps it is time to consider a move to a new job that will offer you better fulfilment.
Article by Kate Smedley, an associate writer with Sandbox Advisors, a firm which helps people with careers, job search and training in Singapore.