Moving On, Career Choices.

So recently I’ve been hearing a few of my coworkers say that they are thinking of leaving our company. Some of these coworkers have been at the company for a few years, while some for have only been here for a few months. At some point you will reach a point where you ask yourself if staying at your company and doing what you are paid to do is worth it.

For some of these coworkers, the reason why they are planning to look for another company is because they’re spouse/family live or work too far from where we work, making the daily commute too taxing or creates a gap between them. For other coworkers, they’re bored of the day to day tasks that we’re assigned, too stressed out, or just generally unhappy with what they thought the position entailed versus what it actually is.

So when and why is it safe to move on from a company? Well while I was interviewing, I actually asked multiple hiring managers what they consider red flags on a resume. A few of them responded, “when a candidate’s resume shows that they can’t stay at a company for a least a year.” The rest of them replied with, “duration doesn’t matter if the candidate can’t explain what their position’s responsibilities were.” What would the general rule of thumb for considering when to leave be?

The minimum most managers find to be acceptable is one year but to be safe, one year and six months. The reason behind this duration is the overhead that comes with training. Managers say it takes about three months to train a new hire, three months for them to ease the new hire into a more independent role, and three more months to make sure the new hire is full assimilated into the full day to day responsibilities that comes with their job. That comes to at least nine months where you’re slowly transitioning that new hire into the position. Once you have finished the climb, you hope for a return. If a new hire leaves before a year, then you end up having to spend time to fill that position and then you’re stuck where you were nine, ten, eleven, or twelve months ago.

This process also ties into being able to explain what your responsibilities and role within a project are/were. If you aren’t able to “defend” your resume in an interview, then odds are you won’t be hired. At the end of the day, an interview is really just a defense of your skills listed on your resume as well as your appearance. You can be the smartest bookworm in the world, but if you can’t impress the manager and leads that are interviews and convince them that you will fit in with their team, then you most likely won’t get an offer. When evaluating whether you should leave a company, you should take into account how much of a contribution you are to your team and project. If you’re a high impact player that many people depend on, then when the reference calls come into your manager, the more likely they’ll say something good about you. On top of that, you never know what the future will hold. Perhaps you’ll meet that manager for another company for another position. The more valuable to a project you are, the more likely you’ll be able to explain the project in a manner that will defend your resume as well as promote your abilities.

So for those of you thinking of leaving your jobs or those of you who are looking for jobs, consider these two points. Being able to show commitment on top of being able to defend/demonstrate your contribution prior to your future interview are two of the key things that hiring managers consider as they interview you. If you plan on leaving for a new position or venture, take time to evaluate how your timing affects how others perceive these factors. Also, don’t make the mistake of quitting your job before you have a new one lined up. The job market isn’t hot enough where unemployment will be short.


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