When someone approaches you about a new position in the company, it’s very flattering. Of course you should consider it seriously. A change might be good! But maybe you’re happy with your current job. Or at least, not dissatisfied with it. Because no job is perfect, the decision-making isn’t always easy. So it’s a good idea to find answers to a few important questions before accepting a new job. This exercise will help you analyze the pros and cons of what this change could entail for you.
To Make the Right Decision, Ask Yourself These Questions Before Accepting a New Job
1. Where do I see myself 5 years from now?
- What are your ambitions? Are you hoping to get a management position and move up the ladder? Or are you happy with the level of responsibilities you have right now, and want to stick with that?
- Are you looking to master the position you’re in right now or would you like an opportunity to change departments and develop new skills?
2. Which factors are most important in order for me to like my job?
- Boss: Is it having a good boss and good leader? A person who has good emotional intelligence, with whom you feel it’s easy to communicate?
- Money: How does money weigh in? If there’s an opportunity for a raise, is it enough to influence your decision?
- Power: Having some power may also be a consideration. Do you like the feeling of taking part in some of the decision-making?
- Role: Surely the type of work you’ll be doing will have some importance if you wish to be motivated to do your job? Do you have specific skills you want to keep practicing?
- Learning: Do you feel stimulated when faced with having to learn new things?
- Colleagues: Do you know who you’ll be working with? Is there a good connection? Does it matter at all?
- Travel Time: If applicable, how much time taken up by travel are you willing to spend?
- Commute: Is it a big plus for you to be close to home to help you balance work and family?
3. What type of tasks do I like to do and what are my strengths?
- Are you more comfortable with operational tasks? Do you need to leave work at night with nothing on your mind — knowing that all is done and tomorrow is another day? Or do you much prefer working on longer term projects?
- Are you happiest when working with a team or colleague? Or you prefer to be given a task you can perform alone? Are you a social person or more of a loner?
- What strengths define you best? Are you for example a good negotiator, problem solver, creator, project manager, a great analyst (and I could go on)?
- How much autonomy do you need your boss to give you?
- Do you perform better when having multiple deadlines to meet? Or on the contrary can this put too much stress on you?
- Are you stimulated by a busy environment or perform best when it’s quiet around you?
4. How does the new position compare with my current job?
Once you’ve answered the first three questions, you need to weigh the new job against your current one. To choose the one that will be most stimulating to you. Which of the two positions will meet most of the criteria that are important to you? Will you be on the right path to reaching your goal in five years?
Always remember that when there’s a good fit between the job you hold and who you are — your strengths, your skills and so on — you’re more likely to perform well. And if you perform well, you’ll be appreciated by your boss and the company’s management. A good recipe for a happy work life.
Another Important Point: You may need to erase this thought from your mind
If ever, after completing this exercise, you’re really tempted by this new position. But, there remains one hesitation, and that is, you wonder if you have enough experience to meet the job’s requirements. Erase that thought from your mind and apply for the job! Think about Sheryl Sandberg’s book Lean In, where she explains having noticed that men just don’t think like that. They will simply go for the challenge with confidence. So in this instance, think like a man…you can do it!