How to jump ship effectively and successfully
Are you frustrated that you haven't found a job that you are passionate about?
Have you gone through multiple job- or even company-hopping?
Are you afraid that you will never find your dream job?
Job-hopping or hopping at Opportunities?
Countless times we are hearing about Millennials not being loyal and constantly job-hopping. Personally, I think Millennials are rather "opportunity hopping". With technology and globalization, the competition is not limited to the same city or country anymore. We can actually work from anywhere in this world which means that job security is a thing of the past because we compete with others from all over the world. However, this is also a blessing in disguise – doors are open to more opportunities.
70% of my career I was operating virtually by collaborating with team members from all over the world. I enjoyed flexible working hours but that also meant I had to adjust my working hours depending on my colleagues in different time zones and join teleconferences at midnight.
My professional background, while diverse, isn’t traditional: With more than 14 years of corporate experience in a Fortune 100 company, I rotated through altogether 6 roles from Finance to Digital Transformation and most recently was appointed as the Head of Customer Operations working from various locations.
Despite only working for one company, you can see my career path was very diverse and some might argue that I am not a specialist and expert in any area.
Well, how I see it is that if you are not a heart surgeon, lawyer or engineer that truly requires in-depth skills and expertise, most jobs can be done if you have the right attitude and appetite to learn.
Myth: Millennials are opportunistic Job-Hoppers
It’s another myth that Millennials are opportunistic and will move immediately when they receive a better job offer.
We can compare retention between Millennials and Gen Xers when they were both the same age. The results are interesting:
When you compare people aged 18 to 35 from February 2016 (Millennials) and February 2000 (Gen X), you find both groups report a similar tenure with their current employer - roughly 13 months.
It gets even more interesting when you compare those who have been with their employer for 5 years or more — the figures stand at 22% for Millennials and 21.8% for Gen X.
So, we can't say that Millennials are more fickle-minded than previous generations.
Should I stay, or should I go?
Job-hopping is an opportunity to gain new skills, experiences and include the ability to take on new responsibilities to help advance your career. There are several reasons why job-hopping shouldn’t be stigmatized anymore:
- People who remain in one job for an extended tenure without gaining new responsibilities can become complacent.
- Moving quickly from job to job also serves to speed up your career development – and ultimately career advancement. The broader your portfolio of work experience is, the more likely your compensation can go up.
- Job-hopping is a great way to expand your network. These days majority of us find their next gig through networking.
- It brings new ideas to the table and questions the status quo for continuous learning opportunities instead of focusing on the "we’ve always done it that way" mindset.
But before you all start writing your resignation letters, it’s important to understand the other side of the coin. Sometimes job-hopping can be harmful to your career:
- Anything less than one year on a job could raise red flags with employers, who may think you are jumping ship within a short time just for the salary.
- You don’t want to come across as if you are a “ship jumper” because employers invest the time to train an employee and obviously don’t want them to leave in a short period of time. Hiring and onboarding new employees requires a significant amount of time and money.
- You might not have the ability to build up evidence and actual results if you only stay at a company for a year or less.
- If you’re regularly on the move, it’s difficult to build relationships, which in turn hinders your ability to create an effective professional network.
If you decide to job-hop, make sure you have a good reason and can articulate it effectively:
My next article on “How to turn your company into a Millennial Talent Magnet” will focus on providing insights on how companies and executives can achieve a more engaged and multi-generational inclusive work environment.