In this article, I'm going to share with you a simple framework to help you determine if it's time to make a change in your career. This strategy has helped thousands of our clients figure out if they should stay where they are, or make a shift.
I'm going to break this down into three easy steps:
Step 1: Understanding "Experience + Learn = Grow"
Step one is understanding the "Experience + Learn = Grow" equation for success. The reality today is that if you aren't constantly growing in your job, you're dying. What I mean by this is that the experiences you have should build up your skill sets, and it's really important that every few months you take a step back and assess if this is actually happening.
For example, imagine that you were assigned a really unhappy client, and you worked very hard to turn the situation around. At the end of it, the client was giving rave reviews about their experience with you and even renewed their contract with the company. This is an example of an experience where you would step back, analyze the steps and methodology you took to turn the client around, and then share with your manager how you were going to use that methodology to help other clients.
This is a sign of professional growth. If you are having experiences like this in your current job, then you are someplace with lots of opportunity to help you succeed. You're growing, not dying.
Step 2: Analyze Your Experiences & Skills
Now that you have that understanding, it's time to move on to step two: analyzing and making sure the experiences you're having are helping you grow in both financial influence and skills.
Let me break down the financial part for you: you want opportunities in an organization that will let you build up your income, take advantage of opportunities to get raises (if only to keep up with the rising costs of living), and earn promotions.
If these things are important to you, then you have to make sure that this company is giving you the appropriate environment to work in. And by influence, to put it bluntly, I mean power and control over your career.
The more influence you have in terms of the respect and support you need from your peers and managers, the better. Those times when you have had success are going to help you earn that trust and respect.
Finally, the skills themselves you develop along the way matter, because the reality today is that you have to continuously stay relevant to your work (as shown in the example above). As you're building up your skill sets, you are becoming more and more valuable to an employer.
If you feel like you're hitting a dead end in any of these areas, then it's time to make a change. Let's talk about that in step number three.
Step 3: Make The Decision (And Stick With It!)
The last step in the process is to make the decision of whether or not to leave, and then stick with it.
Once you've done the first two steps, you'll know whether or not you've hit a roadblock. If you have, you really only have two options here:
A) Sit down with your boss and have an honest conversation to see what you can do to get back on track.
B) Make the decision to leave.
If you take option B, it's really important that you go all in and build a real job search plan to execute on your decision. Studies show that people who are mentally checked out on the job—yet not proactively looking for new work at the same time—can and do end up becoming under-performers. In worst case scenarios, they actually get fired for poor performance.
To that point, you need to have a comprehensive understanding of what it takes to actually find work today. The reality is that jobs have changed a lot over the last couple of years. If you want to land a new job, then I highly encourage you to check out Work It Daily subscriptions. Depending on the package, you can get access to all of our course content and our trained one-on-one coaches who can help you with interview prep, your resume, your LinkedIn profile, your cover letter, and a heck of a lot more.
Lastly, remember that you're not alone in your career and job search. So come back and visit us, because if you want to win, you've got to work it daily.
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