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The One Question to Ask Before Changing Jobs

The days when it was a giant red flag to have multiple jobs on your resume are gone because, in today’s job market, it’s common for professionals to have experience with various employers. And when done the right way, changing jobs offers a better opportunity for you and makes sense to potential employers.

When you’re contemplating making a career change, there are probably numerous questions you ask yourself. Some are logical, and some more emotional, making the decision to change your job one of the most exciting, terrifying, and refreshing actions you can take. And while riding the emotional wave, you might ask yourself many things before you lunge at the first promising opportunity that comes your way, including:

  • Do I want a new job or a new career?
  • Do I want to change my job because I don’t like my current job?
  • Do I know what goes into changing jobs?
  • Would I consider taking a pay cut to make the change?
  • Would I take a lower-level position to work for the ideal company?

A decision like a job change is a heavy one, but there’s really only one question you have to ask yourself if you’re considering a change.

What do you like about your current job?

We’ve all had bad days at work. Sometimes days turn into weeks or weeks into months. You might feel like you’re in a hopeless, never-ending rut, but instead of coming up with a laundry list of the things you don’t like about your current job, try asking yourself what you actually like about it before you decide to make a change.

Outcome, Process, Environment

First, think about where you get the most satisfaction from work. Is it the feeling of reaching the final product, the actual work it takes to get there, or the environment you experience either?

If it’s the final product but not the process it takes to get there, you might be someone who thrives best in a workplace with frequent outcomes. For example, if you’re a personal trainer, you will work better with people who can reach their fitness goals in a shorter period of time. Training someone to run a marathon, which takes about 16-20 weeks, wouldn’t be as appealing to you as training someone to run a 10k, which takes about 6-10 weeks.

However, if you’re a personal trainer who gets more out of the actual work that goes into reaching the outcome, training someone to run a marathon might be more your wheelhouse.

Now, consider the environment. For example, if you’re a personal trainer who likes to train their clients with the assistance of free weights and machines, you might shy away from outdoor training or strictly cardio training and stick with clients who you can train in-house.

Values and Passions

Values and passions are things we tend to gravitate towards. Look where the work you do or the company you work for lines up with either of those. Are you someone who prefers doing their work at a desk? Then being an uber driver isn’t the best job decision. However, becoming a rideshare driver might suit you well if you can’t stand being at a desk. The pandemic did a good job of shining a light on those who were made to work behind a desk and those who absolutely weren’t.

Look at where your happiness and satisfaction come from. If your job does or doesn’t align with that, you have the answer to that one question. Are there any other questions you ask before deciding to change jobs? Join the conversation on LinkedIn. Also, check out Change Up Your Work-From-Home Routine.