Do you believe that the grass is greener?
I absolutely believe the grass is greener, but like everything else in life, it is situational. The key to a good move is running to something instead of running from something. To do that, you have to make sure that you have gotten the most out of your experience with your current employer.
The benefits of tenure are often underestimated. However, time in position gives you certain milestones that will take longer to develop when frequently changing jobs.
Take problem-solving, for example; it is easy to walk into a new situation and be a superstar. But can you build and sustain a long-term strategy of success? Can you beat last year's numbers? You build real grit when you stay through the good times and the bad.
Let's talk about relationships, and be honest...not everyone has been a joy to work with during your career. However, longevity in a position helps you build your influencing skills. Changing jobs and being the flavor of the month gives you an easy way in, but moving people forward that you have worked with for years is a skill.
We could go on and on about the benefits of tenure, but the most important thing to remember is that no one leaves and does worse when it is time to go. So the big question is, how do you know when it is time to leave? How do you ensure that the grass will be greener?
First, ask yourself - have I gotten everything I can out of my current role at my company? Is there still room to grow and learn? Have I felt success? Have I failed and picked myself up and moved forward? Have I learned everything I can from those around me? Have I taken the time to teach others?
If you come to the realization that this chapter is closing, don't sit in denial. The moment that you know it is time to go, start building your exit strategy. For every $20K you make above $50K, add at least another month to your search strategy. The trick to running to something is understanding what you want next and then working to find the right opportunity and the right company with the right leaders. This takes research, time, and reflection. The key is patience.
Step two put together a plan that ensures that you exit feeling good about what you are leaving behind. What projects do you need to wrap up? How will you stay engaged so that you can leave on top? How will you balance the ups and downs of the search process and the work you are currently committed to? Once you have mentally packed your bags, it becomes difficult to stay engaged in the day-to-day.
You can't leave the first time you experience hardships at work. You have to struggle through the challenges, feel the accomplishments of climbing the mountain. Not only will those stories resonate during the interview process, but they will ensure you build the skills that you need for future success.
Don't know where you are headed? Let me help you as you decide, should I stay or should I go? After years of sitting in HR and building the strategies to help attract, develop, and retain great talent, I am using that knowledge to help the individual chasing a dream, looking for more, searching for purpose.
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