January 20th, 2011

Fall back vs. Spring Forward: Review Your Job Forecast

When you think of your job, is it full of sunshine with occasional showers? Or is it non-stop thunderstorms with lightning? I’m sure the answer varies depending on industry, rank and the professional.

I received an email last week that featured a young woman who creatively quit her job through storyboards. It seems as if she had someone video record her with the cardboards explaining her purpose for resigning. As exciting as this may seem, I recommend not doing this. Instead, be sure to bow out gracefully. If you are at your breaking point with your job, don’t jump for the resignation papers just yet! Be sure to mentally, physically and emotionally prepare yourself for this new journey of employment that you will embark on.

The hard truth is that most cannot survive without a paycheck and lining up another one when you’re unemployed will likely take longer that you anticipate. The financial consequences can make quitting a difficult decision. Before walking out the door without another offer lined up, be honest with yourself about your true willingness to hustle to land another position and be sure you have at least six months of expense money to burn through; and unless you quit for good cause, you may not be eligible for unemployment benefits.

If your employment situation isn’t the best, yet many resources (such as debt, children and medical payments) are relying on you, you might want to consider hanging on to the job you have, as well your paycheck and starting your job search before you resign. That old saying that “It’s easier to find a job, when you have a job” is still relevant.

Before you quit your full-time job, consider quitting some other things that may be affecting your performance, both personally and professionally. Are you investing your time in so many different obligations that you find yourself being stretched too thin? Are you involved with committees, organizations or even extracurricular activities that do not offer you a return on investment? Then it may be time to re-organize your time and commitment.

On the contrary, if you are one of the chosen few that have a job opportunity lined up, be sure to weigh the options. Consider the pros and cons of  the new work environment versus your current one. Think about the work environment, flexibility, salary and benefits in addition to the job responsibilities. How about opportunities to advance? If the new job remains promising and you feel sure that this is the right change to make, then make the move.

A few last things to keep in mind are to always speak highly of the company and remain professional. Also, it may be difficult to obtain, but try to ask for a letter of recommendation from your supervisor. That way, you will have something documented that highlights your skills and overall performance in the job. Lastly, offer your support and help throughout this transitional phase. Wish the company the best of luck, and spring forward toward your new opportunity!

About the Author

Joshlyn Ross
A native of Oakland, California, Joshlyn Ross works diligently to share variations of industry news. She also shares words of wisdom and tips for other young professionals looking to capitalize in their respective fields.



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