We’ve all sat at our desk, our thoughts desperate in attempts to drone out the office drag, longing stares out of the window and dreaming of dramatic career change. Often there are more questions than answers, putting us off switching jobs before we’ve even but plans into progress. Before setting the wheels in motion, most people will ask themselves the basics of “how much will I get paid?” and “how long will it take me to travel to and from work?”. Issues of importance, sure, but these are short-term incentives. Instead, there are deeper questions to ask and concerns you might want to consider, so that you ensure long-lasting job satisfaction. So, here are 5 IDEAL considerations before careering into career change.

What long-term impact will this decision have?

A lot of impulsive, reckless folk might make a sudden job change because it feels right in the short-term, but we can advise that this is not the best approach. Period. Moving up within your chosen career should be seen as a marathon rather than a sprint and just because you feel that you’re not being paid enough in your current role doesn’t mean that you should seek immediate gratification elsewhere. Bide your time; good things come to those who wait (and work hard). After all, a CV that implies a candidate is a “job-hopper”, going from jobs in Leeds to jobs in Manchester, for example, may not even make it through the initial screening process.

Will I be challenged?

After years of your skills being extended beyond their reach, or perhaps a perceived lack of sufficient reward for your endeavours, maybe you’ve decided to move to a new job so that you can settle into a more relaxed, laid-back role. Although this might seem like a good idea in the short-term, how long will it take you before the same disillusionment and boredom sets in with your new position? Feeling challenged within the workplace is important in setting goals to achieve and ambitions strive for. Without these, you may find yourself stuck in a rut once more, and possibly forever.

What kind of work/life balance will I have?

Maybe you perceive long days and unsociable hours to be fair game in pursuit of a fulfilling, successful job. Maybe, then, you’re mad. If not, you’ll need to consider exactly what kind of work/life balance you’ll have in your new role.  A better balance between work schedules and time with your family is one of the main reasons that people decide to change their job, so ask the HR Manager of your new company what the protocol is with things such as holidays and maternity/paternity leave. As always, know your rights and what you’re entitled to.

Are they any incentives?

Other than an increase in salary, what other incentives are you looking for in your new role? Make sure that you ask your new employer or read the company manual before deciding to commit, as additional benefits such as pension contributions, a company car, health coverage, etc. aren’t always offered. More often than not, it is the hidden incentives that persuade an employee to sign on the dotted line and, in the long run, provide a greater benefit than salary alone.

Will this change be good for my career goals?

Changing jobs can trick you into a complacency; that you’re getting ahead and advancing your career goals. But, are you? Any kind of career move should be one that pushes you further toward your end goal, whether that be within the same company or moving somewhere entirely new. Sit down and think about what you really want out of a career, how far up the ladder you’re aiming for, and how much commitment you’re willing to give to the climb. Once you know what you want, you’ll be able to make an informed decision rather than taking a risk.

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