A long (very long?) time ago I started out on my first job working in an office for a very large insurance company, a pretty common first step for women entering the workforce.
I was 17 and I hated every minute of that job. Yet I did it, and I didn’t dare mention a word of my rebellious disdain for the file clerk role. Everyone I knew thought it was just bloody wonderful. My parents, everyone I knew seemed to be of the mindset that you work in one company 20 to 30 years, with never any talk of entitlement to happiness, just eternal gratitude to have a safe secure place to belong.
The carrot stick? Paid retirement at the end of their long, often drudgery-filled work life. What do most of them have today? Lay-off notices due to ‘hard times’ and, you guessed it, zippity- doodah for paid retirement.
Today, unless you work for the government …
… or related tax payer funded institution, our work-life is entirely different. Very different in fact. Fortunate for many of us, things will never be the way they were in the corporate world of being a quiet little cog in the well-oiled corporate machine. Thankfully that has all but disappeared. I say yea, but for many the downside to this can come as a rude surprise.
Why Taking Ownership of Your Career and Changing Jobs is Mandatory!
People are striving hard in today’s work environment. Many work with uneasiness, hoping to survive the next round of lay-offs.
The norm for many businesses out there is that they invest enough to at least sustain and keep things moving forward, perhaps for another year. Unfortunately loyalty between the employee and the boss doesn’t exist, simply because it just can’t.
During financial hardship companies are battling for survival. They need to cut costs. That’s business, nothing personal.
Many ask, and rightfully so, “Is this all there is?”
Many see the writing on the wall and is probably the number one reason why many people do change jobs and set out to look for something new, ideally something offering a more secure future. What happens then? Now you’re reaching for security instead of going after what your talent and ambition have steered you to all these years. Ask yourself this:
- Are you driven to be successful, or just employed?
- Are you committed to moving forward in your career, or are you okay settling with feeling stuck?
- Do you grow tired of just clocking in and out every day?
Here’s the top five signs that you need to start viewing your job, your work life, your career, differently.
I Keep Hitting the Same Rut and It Keeps Getting Deeper.
You are in a job rub, doing things in a certain way that makes you feel like a robot, no voice, no input, just waiting for the next bomb to drop. Nothing kills enthusiasm more than staying in a job that suffocates your potential. Listen carefully. Regardless of your education or experience, you do not have to live that way. Now that in itself is a very good motivator to be changing your job every 2-3 years.
Promotion? That Only Happens in Customer Sales.
If you feel like your career is being stalled, it probably is. You’re starting to feel insecure and fearful about your ability to create a future for yourself, and your family. You fear becoming obsolete and it’s wearing you down. Watch what others do that change jobs and seem to be getting ahead faster than you. Learn from their foresight and ambition, opting for a better opportunity to build their own tomorrow. If there are no prospects to do this where you work, changing jobs is the only solution.
You Can’t Remember What Being Challenged Feels Like.
Working at a job without any challenge is boring and tiresome; productive people simply won’t live that for very way. If you are someone who loves a challenge, you need to be keeping your ear to the ground, for companies with values and goals that align with your ambition an drive. Find that place where you can excel more and that can execute on your skills as a competitive professional. It’s in you to find that place. Start the journey NOW.
You See Politics Instead of Opportunity
When all you see is political posturing running your work world, it’s time to either put on a new pair of glasses or sharpen your campaigning skills. Politics are inevitable yet surviving the nasty back-stabbing variety is verrrry career-limiting. You may survive this round, and the next, but watch out for what comes round. When it’s time to find work elsewhere, few prospective employers will interested in your skills at having survived due to cunning, back-sliding, and finger pointing.
They Don’t Even Know Your Name
Every employee deserves recognition for a job well done. A company that values its employees will always recognize and appreciate the efforts spent and success achieved. Great leaders know this and will go out of their way to get to know employees at all levels. If you are are doing a great job, but not being heard or recognized, requests for assistance are being ignored, territories are expanded and demands for more travel are being loaded on without consulting with you, these are very good reasons to start looking around. You can’t fight ignorance.
Find the company that sees your worth and you can be appreciated; really you will be inspired the more to give all the best in you if that’s the case.
Ashton & Associates are specialists at identifying right fit candidates on the basis of values alignment, ambition and drive, skills, competencies and need.
Barbara Ashton is the President and Founder of Ashton & Associates Recruiting.
Ashton & Associates Recruiting… Hiring Right. Every Time.
This post has been approved for public release by Barbara Ashton. All certified posts carry this Google Authorship link to Google.