Have you had situations where you just don’t feel great about the work you are doing or the people you are with, but can’t quite put your finger on “why?”  Are you dreading Sunday nights and having the Monday morning blues?

The beginning of the year is a great time to assess where you are in your career! Are you still enjoying your work, are you getting along with your boss, is the company moving in the direction that will help you in your career? There are many areas that you can assess to help you determine whether it is time to leave or stay? Everyone has different values, career goals and interests. Spending time assessing how satisfied you are with your career is important to long term success.

How do you decide it is time to leave? : Three Step Process: Assess, Prepare and Execute

                                                   Step 1 Assess:

  • Your top 3-5 work values that need to be met such as; influence, decision making, recognition, challenge, working alone or in a team and face pace environment. Work values helps define the culture.

  • Your personal, functional and technical skills and are you able to use them in your current role?

  • What do you really like to do? Are you doing something that interests you?

This will help understand  why you are dreading Monday mornings and the week ahead.    Think of these  answers as your foundation that will give you a guide to make better career decisions.

There are other things to consider too. If the answer to some of the questions below is “yes”, it could be another sign it is time to move on to something new.

  • Are you being overlooked for projects?

  • Has your relationship with your boss changed…. new leadership occurred due to re-structuring or the boss that hired you left the company?

  • You are not having fun at work and working too many hours

 

You have decided to leave, now what? Before you take action and start applying for jobs, make sure you are prepared for the search process. It can be very challenging to look for a new opportunity while you are working, so develop a plan and set realistic goals.

                                                       Step 2 Prepare:

  • Update your resume with accomplishments and results not responsible or task statements and make sure it highlights what you want to do in your next role.

 

  • Update your LinkedIn profile (Career Tip, use LinkedIn frequently while you are working, so if you start looking for a  new job, it will appear less obvious to your employer) that will attract Recruiters and Hiring Managers to find you.

 

  • Understand what your market worth using www.salary.com and conversations with Hiring and Human Resource Managers.

 

  • Learn how to answer the salary question “what are your salary expectations or what are you making in your current position)  before you apply for positions. (Watch for next month’s blog on this topic!) It will  enhance your negotiating power during the offer stage.

 

  • Read the job description thoroughly and  compose a cover letter matching the requirements of the job against your qualifications and experience.  

 

  • Prepare, prepare and prepare for each interview and make sure you focus on all job search techniques not just the advertised market.

                                                Step 3 Execute:

  • Hit send- congratulations!  You are now thinking more of your career and not just a job. Assessing where you are before you take action will help you get to where you want to be much sooner because you are clearer of what you want.

                                        It is time for me to stay!

After you have completed the assessment process, you might be surprised that the majority of your values are being met, your skills need a little tweak and the company and manager  is not as bad as you thought. Instead of leaving, you want to stay and by having a “career conversation” with your manager is all you really needed!

Jayne M. Mattson is the founder of Career Engage.  A true supporter of BostonYPA; she will be writing monthly on career related topics for our members.