New year, New You, New….Job?
As yet another year comes to a close, you may find yourself reflecting on the year that was and what changes you would like to make in the new year. The pandemic has changed many things, including bringing to our attention not just what we value and fear, but also what we are capable of when we really put our minds to it.
If you are contemplating a career move in the new year, research shows you are not alone. According to a recent study conducted by PwC, 38% of Australian workers are contemplating leaving their current employer in the next 12 months in what has been dubbed The Great Resignation. This is a trend that has already been observed in the USA and has put Australian employers on notice for 2022, making them more open to negotiation to retain and attract the right talent.
What this means for you is that now is a great opportunity to ask for and negotiate your professional needs. In this article we take a look at how you can give your career a health check and determine – should you stay or should you go?
How well does your current workplace fit into your future plans?
Before making any kind of career move, it is important to take a step back and set some lifestyle goals. Give some thought to your job satisfaction as well as how you spend your time outside of work. Do you enjoy living in your current location? Are there particular goals you wish to pursue personally or professionally? If you aren’t much of a goal setter, another way to answer this question, is to consider what aspects of your life and daily routine you would like to change, and which ones you want to keep. For example, do you want to adjust the hours that you work? Are you regularly feeling stressed or exhausted at the end of the day? How is your health? Is there a hobby or additional field of study you would like to pursue? Make a note of what your ideal routine would look like and if you can, put a timeframe on some of your goals as well.
Check your bank statements
This may sound like an odd thing to say when assessing your career, but it is an important step to take. How satisfied you are with your job will often be reflected by your bank account. Are you spending a lot on takeaway or eating out because you are low on time or feel social pressure to eat out with your colleagues? Are your medical bills on the rise because you don’t have the time to take care of your health? Prior to the pandemic did you spend a lot on travel to escape the daily grind? How much do you spend on alcohol each month and to what extent is that work related? These are just some examples that can point to either working in a line of work that you don’t enjoy or being in a toxic work environment.
Is money the answer?
A recent report by PwC titled What Workers Want found that in addition to being paid well, workers also value flexibility (eg working from home), autonomy and in particular workplace culture, with ‘working with good co-workers’ receiving the highest ranking in importance. This means that going for a job that pays more isn’t necessarily always the answer as it can come with strings attached – like spending more money than you would otherwise in order to fill a void. This means needing to give some serious thought as to the reasons why you would change jobs. Take a moment to reflect on your workplace and make up a list of both good and bad. Would more money make it worth it for you to stay? What would be the reasons to leave? Is resigning your only and best option or are there other solutions available?
Make a wish list
Now that you have some lifestyle goals in mind and have checked in on any work-related spending triggers, it is time to start putting together a wish list of all the things you value so that you can negotiate for them with your employer. Give consideration as well to elements of the job that you enjoy or dread doing and write down those activities or projects that you would love to do more of. It is only by being aware of what we desire more of and taking proactive steps to get there, that anything will change.
Know your worth
Whether you are wanting to change jobs or negotiate a higher pay, it is important to be prepared. Start by listing your skills, abilities, and your achievements (however small you may feel they are). Next, take a look at other similar roles and find out what the going rate is for your skill set. Some of this information you may be able to find online, and it doesn’t hurt to give a few recruitment agencies a call as well in the process.
The start of a new year presents a perfect opportunity to give your job a ‘health check’ and decide whether you wish to make any changes to your career path. While it is important to own your worth and not be underpaid, it is also important to recognise that money is just one component that affects our job satisfaction. If you find that you are in a toxic work environment, then it may be time to make a change regardless of the money on the table. On the other hand if you feel trapped in a career that you don’t enjoy, changing employers is unlikely to change your job satisfaction in the long run and you need to give some serious thought to what other paths you can pursue and put together a plan for how you can get there. Whatever you decide, keep in mind that a change in your employment may require an update to your income protection policy – all you need to do is give us a call and we will gladly take care of the rest!
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What you need to know
This information is provided and produced by Serendipity Wealth Advisors. The advice provided is general advice only as, in preparing it we did not take into account your investment objectives, financial situation or particular needs. Before making an investment decision on the basis of this advice, you should consider how appropriate the advice is to your particular investment needs, and objectives. You should also consider the relevant Product Disclosure Statement before making any decision relating to a financial product.