My addiction to job hunting (“the hunt”) has made me somewhat of an expert at landing jobs—and a job hopper.
“Look at me! I’m moving on to greener pastures!”, “I’m going to where I’ll be paid what I believe I’m worth!”, “At my new employer, management will get me.” I know firsthand how job-hopping can make a person feel as if they’re in control.
I’ve also experienced firsthand, more than once, starting a new job and realizing within a few days, even hours, that leaving my previous employer was a mistake—I’d made a hasty decision.
The media is reporting that everyone is quitting their jobs; as a result, employers are experiencing “The Great Resignation.” This mass reshuffling of employment is attributed to the pandemic prompting employees to seek better jobs.
Actually, the Great Resignation represents the peak of a long-term trend of rising quitting rates that began over a decade ago due to five factors: retirement, relocation, reconsideration, reshuffling, and reluctance.
If the media is to be believed, employers have trouble filling job openings; hence, job candidates are now in the driver’s seat. In contrast, emails I receive from frustrated job seekers paint a different picture. Don’t let wishful thinking lull you into believing today’s job market isn’t populated with hyper-competition, especially for sought-after jobs at sought-after companies.
I don’t have a crystal ball, so I can’t predict the future power dynamics between employers and employees. However, I’m certain about one thing, the employer-employee relationship, and the economy, which is cyclical, are in constant flux. Inevitably employers will be back in the driver’s seat, which given the rapid growth in AI, robotics, and self-service, not to mention using contractors and contractor, might be sooner than employees would like.
Additionally, Bay Street and Wall Street are nervous, central banks are hiking interest rates attempting to curb inflation, and geopolitical unrest is worsening supply chain issues that began in 2020. Based on history, the recent spike in inflation will cause the economy to contract. The warning signs of a looming recession, possibly a major one, are flashing.
It’s not a matter of if there’ll be an economic contraction/recession; it’s a matter of when, which means employers will downsize.
If you’re considering joining the Great Resignation, keep the following in mind: Last one in, first one out. No one’s ever accused me of not being pragmatic.
I’m not saying you should stay with your current employer forever. Considering my track record that be hypocritical of me to say. Changing jobs for the right reasons and at the right time—making a well-thought-out strategic move—is often required for career advancement and income growth.
What are your reasons for wanting to join the Great Resignation? We’re talking about your career. I assume you have career goals other than “to make lots of money.” Are you just jumping on the Great Resignation bandwagon? Is now the time for you to move on? Don’t let your ego make your decision.
An article I read on the Ultimate Kronos Group (UKG™) website, 15+ Million Pandemic-Era U.S. Job Quitters Say They Were Better Off in Their Old Jobs, makes the point that we seldom give our decisions the serious consideration they deserve. According to the article, 43% of people who quit during the pandemic admit they were better off at their old jobs, and 1 in 5 have returned to their old employer.
Maybe the media should be reporting on “The Great Regret.”
To avoid regretting having left your employer consider the following:
- TIP: Write a pros and cons list of leaving your current employer.
- Don’t just chase money. The most common reason to change jobs is to earn more money, but is the “more money after taxes” worth it? More money means more accountability, headaches, stress and hours, higher expectations, etc.
- Are you running away from your present employer because the going is getting tough, and you believe elsewhere will be easier? What is your reasoning for believing that elsewhere will be better?
- What do you expect from a new employer? Are you being realistic?
- How will changing your employer now advance your career?
There’s nothing wrong with wanting a shiny new job, new colleagues, a new boss, etc. I know what the need to get out of Dodge feels like. However, upon reflection on whether the grass will be greener elsewhere, you might conclude staying put, for now, is in your best interest. Staying put could be the best career decision you ever make.
Nick Kossovan, a well-seasoned veteran of the corporate landscape, offers advice on searching for a job. You can send Nick your questions at [email protected].