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Five Reasons to Change your Job

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The New Year is often a time of renewed focus.  Having had some time off work to relax, recharge and reflect on the year that was, we may well want to create some change in our lives and often the first thing on the list is a new job.

If you’ve headed back to work, after what for most of us has been glorious weather, with some trepidation; then perhaps the time is right to get inspired and make a move.   Be careful though not to mistake the usual ‘back to work blues’ (something most of us suffer from after a holiday) with the need to make radical changes.  So how do you know when the time IS right to make a change?  Here are our top five reasons.

 

1. You are completely unmotivated

We all get a little bored in our work from time to time but that’s not usually a good reason to throw in a perfectly good job.  There’s often something that can be done to manage boredom – like asking for additional responsibilities and projects to work on or perhaps taking on some training.   You may even be satisfied in a job you find boring if it allows you to do other things in your life that matter more to you. That was certainly the case for me when my three children were very young – I simply didn’t have the energy for a job that was too full on and required me to stretch myself. The ability to leave work at work and focus on my family outside of work was what mattered most. 

But if you are craving new challenges and there is no opportunity in your organisation for growth then maybe it’s time to move on.  While no job is enjoyable every minute of the day, if you’re stagnating and feeling unmotivated most of the time then a change of job could be the answer.

2. The work environment is toxic and you dread going to work

We can’t get along with everyone all of the time and again it’s not advisable to change jobs because of one or two people you find it hard to tolerate.   However if gritting your teeth and focusing on what you need to achieve at work just isn’t working and your colleagues (or boss) are truly toxic then you’ve got a problem that may not be easily fixed.   If you’ve tried hard to find a solution and sought support from management or HR but aren’t getting any traction you may need to take the next step. Feeling anxious just thinking about your colleagues is a sign you should move on, particularly if it’s starting to affect your physical and mental health.

3. Your values aren’t aligned with the company culture

Maybe you don’t believe in the organisation’s products. Maybe there are significant moral differences between how you and the organisation or management operate.  Maybe you’re not able to spend enough time with your family due to unreasonable work commitments. Or perhaps you are in a job that simply has no meaning for you.   If this is the case then your core values are probably not aligned with those of the organisation and you’re bound to be feeling uncomfortable.  Taking time to clarify your core values is something I’d encourage everyone to do as the more similarity there is between your values and those of the organisation the more satisfaction you’re likely to experience.  If it’s a complete mismatch however then there may not be much you can do to change things and it could be a good time to reassess whether you are in the right job.

4. You’ve achieved everything you set out to 

If you’ve been in your job for a reasonable length of time (at least two years) and you’ve achieved everything you set out to do, performed well, delivered what was required and made a significant contribution then the time might be right to look for a new challenge.  If being promoted within your organisation isn’t an option in the foreseeable future and you’re ready to progress now then it’s time to consider your options.

5. You’re underpaid

Given that the average annual pay increase in New Zealand is around 3%, it’s fair to say if you stick with your current job for a long time your pay isn’t likely to grow too much and for most it’s been fairly minimal since the recession.   If you’ve done your research around current market rates and you know that you’re underpaid for what you do then it’s either time to leave or negotiate with your current employer.

If you’re performing well and exceeding expectations then talking with your manager about your achievements with some clear and non-emotive reasons as to why you deserve a pay rise is a good place to start.   If you don’t get any joy with this approach and you’re being honest with yourself as to the value you’ve added then it is time to start looking.

Final Thoughts

Before you jump ship it’s important that you think through what you really want from your next job and plan your move to be sure you don’t end up in a similar position.  It’s always best to have a job to go to before you quit so don’t be tempted to resign before you have a job offer.  You’ll need a good reference too so it’s important not to burn any bridges either.  Continue to be professional and do your job well.

So there are our top five reasons, let us know what you think are some other good reasons in the comments below.

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