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Should I stay or should I go…

Spring is a great time of the year. Flowers begin to blossom, tree buds start to bloom and we are awakened by the chirping of birds. It’s also the time of the year when, after a good first quarter, companies start hiring and recruiters start calling, offering a better job and a better life. Before you decide to leave what you know for the unknown, here are few questions to ask yourself. The answers may help you make the right decision for you and your career.

1. Is this a good career move? Now is the time to clarify your career goals. Will this move help get you closer to your goals? A recruiter who specializes in your area may help you determine if this is the right move for you. Most recruiters will be willing to share their perspective knowing that you take your career seriously and that you will remember them along the way. Call on your mentors and colleagues; they are a good resource and will likely be more objective than you can be when you are trying to make such an important decision.

2. Is it the right time? Unless it’s unbearable, it’s best to stay in a position for at least one year. Many employers are concerned about longevity and loyalty and may discount you for a potential future opportunity if they see that you’ve moved too soon. It’s important to fill your resume with accomplishments or achievements and that’s easier to do the longer you’re in one role.

3. Have I done my due diligence? A client of mine was lured to a company known to have a reputation for over-promising and under-delivering to their employees. She was only there a short time before she regretted not checking them out before she joined. Just like a company wouldn’t hire you without checking references, you shouldn’t accept an offer without checking out your future employer and, if possible, manager. Don’t be fooled by the “best employer” awards as the criteria used may not be important to you. Use social media to connect with former employees, or others who may be connected to the organization, to determine if this is the opportunity for you.

4. Is it too good to be true? If a company is paying more than the industry norm or offering you a position several levels above your current role, beware! Companies will do this if they’re in a hurry to fill a role or if they have churn (many resignations) and have multiple positions to fill. Both reasons are cause for concern. It’s the old adage, “if it’s too good to be true, it probably is”.

5. What am I afraid of? You may have fear that you can’t do the job. Now is the time to use your logical brain and turn your attention to the facts. Fear is natural but can be overcome by positive self-talk. Don’t let fear stand in the way of a great opportunity.

6. What does my gut say? Although it’s important to consider the facts, it’s equally important to tap into, and listen to, your instincts. Psychologist, Ap Diiksterhuis, found in his experiments that the longer people spend analyzing options in decision making, the less satisfied they are with their decisions. Trust your intuition – it’s rarely wrong.

Barbara Morris-Blake

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