How to know it’s time to change jobs

Now its 5am…RINGGGG!!! Your alarm clock goes off again! Your sweet dream is suddenly cut short again as you struggle to open your ‘Heavy eyes’. You reach for your alarm in the dark to snooze it or stop its battering noise so you can at least buy yourself an extra five minutes then you suddenly remember the constant traffic you have to contend with again and the fact that you have to get to that office before 8am else you will be late again. Gosh! Its morning again, what a life! All these for a job you don’t even enjoy anymore.

Truth is its not necessarily waking up that early that you dread, most times it is waking up to go do a job you don’t even like anymore.

Are you constantly stressed at work? Do you most times feel like you don’t fit in anymore at the office? Do you suddenly feel like something somehow doesn’t just fit in? Do you feel like you are now a square peg trying so hard to fit in a round hole? If so, then you might be ready to change jobs. In fact, experts believe these are just a few of the signs that it’s time for you to change jobs.
It’s so easy to fall into a stupor when your job meets your basic needs. A job search seems like such an undertaking that we think “I’m fine. I can hang out in this job for a while yet.”
We say to ourselves “Maybe my job isn’t the greatest job of all time but at least I have a job. Some of my friends don’t. I can think about changing jobs later in 2018. I don’t have to think about it now.”It’s true that if you have a decent job that pays a reasonable salary and uses your brain even a little bit, you are doing well relative to lots of people but is that enough? Obviously the answer is NO!
You need a bigger platform, and you’ll build that platform by seeking out new challenges and learning opportunities whenever the previous source of challenges and learning opportunities gets stale. If you are not constantly learning and growing your resume, your network and your confidence, then your job is ripping you off. You are putting more into the job than you are getting out of it. When you do the same things day in and day out for years, you may as well be locked away in a cave or living in a bubble. The real world outside your office walls is constantly changing.
You really need to stay in step with those real-world changes!!!
Here are a few signs that seriously suggest it’s time for you to consider changing jobs and abandoning that ‘miserable’ desk.

1. Living the Status Quo-If you’ve been at the same company, same position and possibly the same desk without any form of promotion, acknowledgement or advancement for the past two to three years—and you want to continue moving your career forward—it’s time to look elsewhere. Even in large organizations where promotions are tough to come by, you should be able to make some sort of upward movement within this time frame or learn several things outside your job description. It’s however easy to get stuck in a job that you love just because you love what you’re doing. Getting stuck can be really comfortable, however, it’s important to remember that every job should enhance your skills and add to your value as an employee. As long as you are not learning anything new and all you do each day is routine, you need to pick up your certificates and resume again.
2. You lack passion- Its Sunday evening and you already have a headache about Monday, you no longer wake up in the morning with a feeling of excitement towards your job or once you get into the office, you have a serious mood swing and you are upset for no reason (nothing seems to interest or motivate you). That exciting feeling you once used to have when you first started working has suddenly dwindled and now you struggle to give yourself reasons to get up and give it a go every day.
3. Your ideas are not being heard- Employee engagement is one of those buzz worthy management phrases we hear all the time, but there’s a reason it got to be so overused: employee engagement matters. If your company doesn’t seem to care about your engagement, or your ideas are no longer heard or valued; you can’t seem to get time with the ‘powers that be’; or you cannot get approvals or acknowledgment for great work done, then I think it’s time to find a new job.
4. You’re consistently stressed, negative, and/or unhappy at work- Nothing interest you or motivates you. You can’t seem to get your eyes off the clock because you can’t wait for the close of work. You feel stressed right from the first hour of work. You get anxious or unhappy just thinking about work, that’s a good sign that it’s time to move on. Your job is supposed to bring you some form of happiness in the first place not anxiety.
5. You are not Learning- If your learning curve has flattened out or you’re really not feeling challenged, this may signal an urgent need to move on. You may not be learning something new every day on the job, but you should at least be improving upon your core skills and picking up new ones.

6. You don’t fit in with the corporate culture and/or you don’t believe in the company anymore- You suddenly feel a disconnect between you and the company when you look at the ethical or moral standards you believe in and the culture the company has chosen to maintain. Your goals and that of the company now differ. Since you are morally misaligned with your employer, it has become an uncomfortable workplace setting. So moving should now be an option.
7. Co-Workers exit- Does everyone around you seem to be constantly updating their resumes’ and looking for ‘greener pastures’? When you start noticing a pattern of disgruntled employees (especially the good ones) seeking exits and frequent departures, this usually indicates there are better places to work—and you probably have options. Take it as a warning sign and slowly begin to chart your exit course.
8. You no longer have good work-life balance – When you find that you’re spending less time with your family because of work, or you cannot commit the necessary time to your job, you should consider looking elsewhere. It’s not okay to always use your off hours/weekends for work, those hours are for rest, family, and to socialize. Boredom may also set in and you begin to wonder why you are still on that job. You should also have time for some academic advancement, trainings and seminars… It’s not all about work.
9. There’s regular Restructuring-If your company is regularly announcing a re-organization, re-strategizing or re-shuffling, this may indicate leadership issues or a shaky strategic direction. Though re-organization can provide an opportunity to step up and shine; more often than not, they signal turbulence and uncertainty which create a challenging environment for your career development needs to get any attention.
10. Your company is sinking-There’s no need to go down with this ship, even your employers wouldn’t want to tow that line. You see the books; you know they are heading for the rocks. It is better to change ‘ships’ before you hit the rocks.
11. It feels like time to go- Beyond these warning signs; don’t ignore what your gut is telling you. No one knows your work environment better than you do. And if you get that sense that you might be better off somewhere else, heed that inner voice, take a bow and go exploring.
Once you realize it might be time to leave your job, you’ll first want to set goals for yourself detailing what you are looking for in terms of responsibilities, company culture, compensation, work patterns and benefits. Given that many of us spend over 50 hours per week at our jobs (weekends sometimes), you owe it to yourself to regularly evaluate your career situation. Even if you’re perfectly happy at your current job, make it a habit to check in with yourself from time to time. Not only is it a good opportunity to review your accomplishments, you’ll also force yourself to gauge the market conditions within your industry.

1 Comment