I was recently in a cafe here in Colorado Springs, and saw a tip jar on the counter with this message: "If you're scared of change, put it here."
Now that's a great pitch for a barrista.
Because change is scary.
I can speak with some authority on that topic. I recently did something I've done a few times previously in my life. I moved. From Albuquerque to Colorado Springs.
As an old colleague of mine put it, I hit CTRL-ALT-DELETE on my life.
It was a great decision - I'm from Colorado originally, and it's amazing to see Pike's Peak every day when I'm out and about.
But the move, starting over, scared the heck out of me. I didn't know the city, didn't know a living soul here. Didn't even know where to get any decent Japanese food.
But I found my way around. Met some great people. Found a fantastic Wing Chun school. And a couple of good Japanese restaurants.
Changing jobs can be a lot like that.
Beyond the stress of the job search, you never really know what you're going to get into. Will you like your new boss? Team? Will the job be what they've described? Or will you be trading one set of frustrations for another set?
So staying where you are - even if it's not great - can seem more appealing that venturing out into the unknown.
That's why I try to get a strong sense of my client's motivation in our initial conversation.
As I've said before, people contact an IT Resume Writer because they have a problem.
But, sometimes, I have to help my clients see that that problem may be more serious than they initially think.
Because the cost of staying in a job where you're not challenged, not learning, not growing, is very real. It's something that needs to be seriously considered, and balanced against the challenges of the job search.
First, of course, there's money. If you can move up even $10K into a new position, that's $100K in ten years. That's significant. But if you move up now, it will be easier to continue to move up - another $10K or $20K - every 18 months, or 3-5 years. So the financial cost of remaining where you are can be high.
But money, often, isn't the prime motivator for my clients. They're seeking greater job satisfaction, greater challenges, greater opportunities for growth.
And not taking on those opportunities for professional growth, and staying in a job where you're not learning, not expanding your professional skills can mean that, in a few years, there may not be many new opportunities.
Technology is constantly changing.
And IT professionals need to be fully committed to enhancing their skillsets with new, leading edge technologies and tools.
So, just as moving up now may make moving up later easier, inaction now can make the process of getting out of a rut far more difficult if your skills aren't cutting edge, and you've been in one position for too long.Because not making a decision IS making a decision.
So think about the cost of staying where you are.
What will that feel like in 5 years? 10 years? 20 years? How will it impact your earning power? Your job prospects? Your family? Your overall satisfaction with your career and life?
If you've really happy where you are, if you're challenged, growing, and well compensated, than it may make sense to stay.