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Is It Time for Me to find another Job?

Career professional and career clock

Are you experiencing signs that it’s time for a change of job? Or is it a complete career change?

There is a big difference in the circumstances and your next step.

Some time ago, a Career Coaching client of mine tabled an interesting issue for our session agenda. We’ve had success in raising her executive presence which resulted in her not only being given the facilitator role for a major pan-Europe project but also the company finally sponsored her for an expensive course to improve her skills and credentials.

Things were going great until a particular Monday morning when the department was told of a major reorganization and the status quo was thrown into disarray. Her superiors were demoted except for her direct reporting line manager.

The true impact on her situation was that she was reduced to doing tasks well below her competency level as her superiors were now doing her role. She had stopped looking forward to Monday and boredom.

Her question was, is it time for me to find another job?

The question might appear odd to the reader, but there was a good reason why my client was diffident. For one thing, she did not have the classic situation where most people move onto new jobs and give the diplomatic ‘work life balance’ reason for leaving.

She had a great job; her rapport with her line manager and superiors is awesome and she loves her department. There have been lots of projects for her which provided job satisfaction until the re-organization happened. But of late, some colleagues had moved on to other jobs.

The issue for her was, what am I doing here right now?

A little probing showed that her line manager had been raising this subject over the last few months in the context of her career progression which she had been working on based on a completely different set of factors – not a reorganization of her department and the sudden job dissatisfaction.

Fortunately in this case, the line manager was a quasi-mentor who helped her explore new options within their department or a lateral secondment until such time as things settled down again. The worst case scenario of leaving the organization didn’t happen.

Not everyone is that lucky.

Sometimes, the signs are very obvious and yet we ignore them either because it means updating our CVs and doing job rounds or we are so entrenched in the system that we don’t want to get out of our comfort zones and look for something better. Our boss and colleagues may have bullied us enough to lower our sense of self-worth and we get trapped in a cycle until we break and cannot perform.

Have you been thinking, “Is it time for you to find another job?”

Here are 7 circumstances where I would recommend taking an honest look at your situation and considering whether you should look for new pastures.

 

  1. You don’t feel like going into work on Monday mornings and often call in sick
  2. You don’t enjoy the work you are doing – it could be under or over-challenging
  3. Your relationship with your boss is far from satisfactory with no open lines for communication
  4. You have lost interest in your professional development to get ahead on your career track
  5. You are not motivated to perform well in your job and only come in to work because you need to log in your attendance
  6. The ambiance in the work place is ‘toxic’ (unhealthy levels of gossip, backbiting, politics and negativity)
  7. The stress level in your job is adversely affecting your health and/or personal relationships

 

If you answered yes to point 7, it might also be pointing towards a potential burn-out.

Some of these circumstances can be worked upon with the help of your human resources department or even you direct reporting boss if he is also your mentor but in other cases, perhaps it is time to take out that CV, brush it up and start looking elsewhere.

The plus point of such situations is its ability to make us finally confront how we really feel about our job and the work that we do in general.

What we often fail to see is perhaps we ourselves have grown along with our career and perhaps it’s time to try something new. It’s time to change our game plan.

 

Time-to-Find-Another-Job

Barack Obama on Change

 

That’s what happened with me and I’ve shared my story in my Meet Your Coach Page. In fact, I’ve seen it happen with a lot of high-flying professionals who wake up one day and realize that their job and career track till date no longer makes them tick. They need more.

I’ve also seen professionals take up a completely different path – like a dear colleague and friend who established the broadband service subsidiary at one of my global major employers, went on to make documentaries until he finally settled into using his lifelong side studies and skills to teach yoga and alternative therapy.

Could that possibly be you?

One clear indicator is you continue to be a top performer but your heart isn’t in it.

You start reading up on areas that interest you but are completely unrelated to your present vocation in life.

Your circle of friends begins to change and you don’t want to talk about work in your leisure time.

You become more open to recruiters who are approaching you with offers in different industries because they believe your skill sets are transferable.

Proactive Action Plan to decide your next career move

Whether it is a job or career change, here is a proactive plan for you to decide your next move.

Think about the 7 circumstances I pointed out above and check if any applies to you.

If you recognized yourself in circumstance 7, take the Burn-out Self-Test to check if you need to course correct your job and life and get instant self-help guidance. It’s an easy assessment based on your reflections of the last 12 months and can provide valuable insights into whether you are heading for burn out or not with suggestions to manage the situation.   Please click here to access the self-test.

Consider whether it’s a career change you want. If you aren’t sure, try this quiz to nail down if it’s a job or career change (click here or on the image below to learn the details).

Career or Job change Quiz

 

Update your CV in any case; it is a good habit for enhancing your sense of accomplishment and who knows, if you get an unexpected call from a headhunter about a dream job, you can act fast. Update your LinkedIn Profile too!

If after your soul-searching and analysis, you feel change is in order, make sure you don’t burn any bridges. Leaving an employer on a good note ensures good recommendations and possibly an offer to return at a later date.

 

How would you handle the situation where an employment change is inevitable?  Would you hunt for a new job or give yourself the chance to reinvent yourself?

Been there, done that? Share your experience with me!

 

 

This post was originally published in November 2013 and has been updated for relevance.

Written by: Vatsala Shukla

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18 Responses to “Is It Time for Me to find another Job?”

  1. Tai says:

    I’ve been there at that place of burn out. I wasn’t motivated to perform, I wasn’t happy with who I was working for, didn’t like what I was doing and the people that I most enjoyed working with had been moved to another group. Those things prompted me to start a business while working. I never wanted to be in a place again where I had little control over how much I could make and who I got to work with. This path isn’t for everyone, but it worked for me.

    • Karmic Ally says:

      Thanks for sharing your story, Tai. There are so many of us who either move on to other jobs or finally follow their calling of being an entrepreneur and creating businesses where we do better. Interestingly, I am reading a book by David Pond where he states that our outside world is affected by our inner balance and that we are led to where our true purpose lies. Until then, there is imbalance. I read this after I wrote the post and am wondering, is there a synchronicity?

  2. Looking back at my corporate experience, I experienced 2-7. I was there for a number of years and quite happy. In fact, some said my blood ran blue because our company color was blue. Then the company went public and the culture really changed. Over time, the company no longer matched my personal values. I started feeling guilty for hiring excellent candidates. I would get physically ill in public restrooms and then walk back into client meetings. I cried often for “no reason.” It was not pretty.

    I wanted out, but my friends and family thought I’d be “crazy” to leave. I made a nice 6 figure salary and the benefits were unlike any other. I was leading a team of over 250 associates with prestige and traveled to awesome locations. I spent well over a year trying to convince myself that I should stay. At the time, my son was still in diapers.

    I still remember the day that I decided to leave. I was thinking about the things that I wanted to teach my son and I realized that if I stayed, I’d be teaching my son to sell himself out. YUCK! It was in that moment that I knew it was time to go. I had a conversation with my husband and he was supportive. Four months later I had left my job, we had sold our home and moved and I started my business. I have never looked back.

    In looking at your question to Tai about circumstances being affected by inner balance, I think there is a lot to be said for that. When I first started at that job, I planned on retiring from there! I had no intention of leaving. I think that things had to get pretty bad in order for me to leave. However, in looking back, I was always an intrapreneur. I’d identify gaps within the company and “volunteer” time to get new initiatives in place. That “volunteer” time was always more satisfying than the work I actually got paid to do. (It also equaled me being at the office up to 80 hours a week plus.) Now, I get the joy of doing that catalyst work and don’t have any of the toxic stuff.

    • Karmic Ally says:

      Thanks for sharing your story and providing insights to my question, Stephanie. Been there and know exactly what you are saying. The one good thing that came out of my own experiences was that I fine tuned my skills and expertise and a burning desire to help others avoid or survive the situations. I remember reading during the initial stages of my own self-discovery that we are all born with a purpose and until we get there, we will be in imbalance and if we don’t get the hint fast enough, life will make sure that we are directed to our true path. In your case, it appears to have been the re-organisation that helped you to finally be of service to a larger circle that needs you!

      Andrea Feinberg touched on negative people during one of her courses and it rings so true. Most of us are scared to take the leap of faith in our abilities and when we see someone else getting ready to take-off, we try to pull them back into our own vortex of fear. Thank God it took you only a year before you broke free and came into your own. More power to you, Stephanie!

  3. Tanya Smith says:

    Great post. And having been in HR in corporate America for the last 20+ years I have seen these time and time again. Especially disheartening to me is #6 – toxicity. When people stop caring about a positive environment and making their workplace enjoyable (regardless of the work itself), everything else goes downhill. One thing I noticed is that you didn’t mention “when you’re not making enough money” and that is right on point. People don’t leave usually because of that — it is the 7 reasons you mentioned.

    • Karmic Ally says:

      Thanks, Tanya. I deliberately did not mention money because that is an area which depends upon industry and skill sets of the employee and a host of other factors. I’ve seen people hand in resignations and then bargain for a pay rise, get it and stay. Toxic environment is the most lethal reason of all especially if it results in health problems like diabetes and heart problems. I know of cases where youngsters in their early 30s have collapsed at work, died of heart failure and employees have been given gag orders on the pain of summary dismissal. We spend more hours in a day at work than the previous generation and if the ambiance is not congenial, then problems are bound to spill into our personal lives.

  4. Reba Linker says:

    I think that stepping back and asking these questions is so important and valuable, Vatsala. As someone who is self-employed right now, I read your article, while ‘translating it’ to apply to my situation. As I read, I found it still so valuable to step back and ask – what do I enjoy most about what I am doing, and what not? Though I must say, I do really love my boss! Lol!

    • Karmic Ally says:

      You’ve got an awesome boss, Reba. 🙂 You are right. The questions apply to us even when we have moved on to new careers including self-employment.

  5. I’ve engineered a few reinventions in the course of my life and in each case the issue was that I needed bigger challenges. I can now look back and see that each change brought me one step closer to leaving the corporate world to become a solopreneur.

    • Karmic Ally says:

      It seems you were destined to become a solopreneur and the jobs you held along the way were to give you insights into the help that your future clients would need, Marquita.

  6. Julie Gorges says:

    Brilliant minds think alike. I wrote on this same subject on my blog this week, but focused on choosing the happiest jobs. Enjoyed your seven signs to watch for to help clarify if a career change is something you should seriously consider. Great information!

    • Karmic Ally says:

      I’m honored that we are on the same wavelength this week, Julie. I noticed my previous profession wasn’t on the happiest list (yes, I visited your blog!). Not surprised though because when I was training for my Chartered Accountancy qualification, I was told that the highest divorce rates at the time were among lawyers and accountants. In hindsight, the crazy stressful hours do take their toll. No wonder there is a higher turnover in these professions and more often than not, an encore career that is completely different.

  7. Suzie Cheel says:

    I have has many career changes and each one I saw as part of my growth path. Love the 7 signs xxx

    • Karmic Ally says:

      A truly spiritual and personal development path, Suzie. Yes, the 7 signs are quite relevant as indicators for change.

  8. Great blog, Vatsala! I think hearing the words “is it time to change jobs” can be so scary! We may have invested time and money in where we are. But jobs are like classes in the school of life. Do we want to stay in the 5th grade forever? Perhaps these words are being said for a purpose which may be from a Higher calling-that you have completed what you were to learn at this level and now it is time to “move up the ladder”.

    • Karmic Ally says:

      I love the analogy, Kathleen. It puts each step towards our self-realization in perspective. Thank you for sharing your precious insight with us.

  9. Joyce Hansen says:

    Early in my career, I worked temp jobs, trying to find out where I belonged. I eventually settled for two long commitments in the field of law and banking. Both were interesting and challenging, but eventually, my heart wasn’t there. However, there were the springboards that sent me back to school for a Masters, which in turn opened up new career opportunities. I think that we need to approach our professional careers as opportunities to discover the many different things that we are capable of doing.

    • Karmic Ally says:

      We have a lot in common, Joyce. I enjoyed a wonderful enriching career in the field of finance for more than 25 years and while I loved my work, there was a growing frustration with the fact that as an operations person and a leader, many of my decisions relating to mentoring my team members fell on deaf ears because of the labeling of our work descriptions. It was one of my motivators to start a career coaching and mentoring business to be the vehicle of impact and change that I wanted to create. I’m so glad you mentioned a new approach to our careers, it’s a paradigm shift that is catching on.

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Meet your coach

I work with driven, passionate, talented and ambitious professionals who've hit a speed breaker in their business or career create their desired breakthrough reclaiming control of their situation with customized strategies and tactics that work.

Using a combination of intuition and analytical skills, I help my clients identify their real issues with exercises to still their mind and allow their inner feeling to emerge in a place of confidentiality and trust. 

When my clients first come to me, they are not in a very happy place and need clarity about themselves and their chosen vocation. Their professional problems are playing havoc with other areas of their life. They know they need to take radical steps to change the status quo but they also know that they need support and accountability to get them their desired result.

 

I really get it, because at one point, I also experienced getting lost in my work rationalizing decisions that were detrimental to the other aspects of my life. I’ve struggled with and won battles of stress management, life balance and career decisions to emerge in a place where I can confidently say that I live my desired life according to my personal Manifesto and have created a business that provides me with a platform for my desired lifestyle and self-expression for myself. I want that for you too!

 
I adhere to the Certified Coaches Alliance Code of Ethics and Standards. A copy is available on request.
1st place BCB 2012
Email: Vatsala(at)karmicallycoaching(dot)com Phone:91 9818517664
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