Should I change my job? The Anatomy of Indecision

Indecision is a state of being, often caused by a lack of information.

“Should I change my job?” Seems like a pretty straight yes/no question, however it is one of the most difficult questions to answer. In this type of scenario, there can be a lack of information about the job to be, or a lack of information about what you value in your professional life. Here are a couple of simple guidelines to help you in your decision making process.

Information. Do you have all of the information that you need about the new job and have you compared it in detail to your existing one? For instance, salary, hours and benefits package only look enticing. But what about work environment and travel? When push comes to shove, are you moving up the ladder or is your move lateral? How does seniority play out as a factor? What is the culture of the new company? What is the new company’s philosophy? Is there room for both personal and professional growth within this new position? Could there be an opportunity for both personal and professional growth in your current position?

Knowledge. How well do you know your values. What do you value most in your professional life? We’d like to think that we know ourselves. We’d like to think that we are all personal experts on the subject matter of ‘me’. However, we are such complex human beings that what we value most isn’t always obvious, especially when what we want is to truly ‘have it all’. Confusing matters even more is a society that shouts at us what we “should” want to obtain for ourselves. Often much of what we truly value resides in our ‘blind spot’. However, in order to prioritize properly and make decisions, it’s important to excavate this “blind spot”, bringing it into the light. This empowers us with crucial information about our professional values, as well as our own decision making styles, helping us to understand why we make the choices we make and helping us to determine if these are the proper choices that will align our actions with our values.

Changing jobs can be an easy decision if the benefits of the new job are overwhelmingly obvious, such as a significantly higher salary, a fantastic benefits package or a work week that allows you to spend more time with your family. These are the obvious characteristics that make a career move that much more appealing and easier to make. However, often a new job often has more subtle differences than your current job, and that makes the decision a little more difficult to make. Here, the decision making process can be painstaking, even when the final decision will ultimately benefit you.

Does an opportunity to work from home truly mean more family time?
It’s always great to be able to pick the kids up from school or throw in a load of laundry in between business calls. If you are contemplating working from home, it’s important to evaluate whether or not your new boss or company will offer you the support you need in order to be as successful in the position as you would like to be. Are you disciplined enough to work from home? Or do you need the structure that a business environment affords? Does the company offer the organizational and support structure that you need in order to truly accomplish project assignments within a certain amount of hours working from home, or does the ‘work from home’ actually guarantee work hours that are spilling over into your family time?

We are a society of options, and although it’s great to know that options exist, sometimes we inadvertently choose to jump out of the pot into the fire. Other times, we might be sitting on our hands when a fabulous opportunity presents itself to us, or even dragging our feet to make a decision. Having guidelines, an abundance of information, time to process this information, and most importantly, knowing our professional values, business fit and decision making style makes all the difference in the world in helping us make good career choices.

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