I was talking with a good friend of mine yesterday, who just made a change from a job she really hated - to one she really loves.

That transition took some time - and we worked through many of the issues. But our conversation got me thinking. One of the biggest issues she was dealing with is a very common one - at every career level, up to C-level.

That issue can seem so obvious that it's easy to overlook.Change is scary.

Don't let fear of change derail your executive career progression!
Don't let fear of change derail your executive career progression!

Even if one is an a position where one feels frustrated, undervalued, overworked, and unappreciated - all the case with my friend - the familiar is, well, familiar.

That's perfectly normal, of course.

But it's also deadly. Because that familiarity - and the concomitant rationalization of a bad situation - can derail your executive career progression - and it can take some time to get your career back on track afterwards.

Because the longer one stays in a job one hates - or even just a job that is unsatisfying - the harder it is build the energy for a job search. One can forget that work can be satisfying - much of the time, anyway - and being undervalued impacts even the healthiest people.

Of course, I'm not suggesting that you shouldn't feel nervous about getting starting on a proactive, strategic job search.

Everyone feels nervous about looking for a new job. And - especially at an executive level - the risks from a misstep are very real, and must be carefully considered before changing positions.

But the risks of remaining in an unsatisfying position are equally real.

Beyond the personal - and often financial - cost, if you can't demonstrate real accomplishments on your resume, then a hiring authority isn't going to see that as the fault of the company - but that you're not a top performer.

A year or two in a job that doesn't let you shine? That can be dealt with. But three years? Five?

That becomes a difficult story to tell.

Which means that the transition that could have been relatively straightforward can now take a lot more work.So I always advise my clients to take a good, honest, and objective look at the current position - and whether it may be time to saddle up - and look for something more satisfying, interesting, and challenging.

Comment