Many professionals may be asking themselves the question, whether it is a good idea to continue looking for new career opportunities these days. While thousands are losing their jobs, it could appear that if you have a secure job, it’s best to hold on to it. It seems that the safest bet is to wait out the crisis, keeping a steady income and not to risk. So it seems. But is it really smart to put your career progress on hold?
While I am not going to claim any expertise in economic trends, I do know that minor or bigger shakes of economy repeat every 2-5 years, with more significant ones taking place every 7-10 years. Additionally, trends and industries are evolving so fast that if we are not running, we will stay behind. So are we really ever safe? Let me think out loud about options for those of you who may feel stuck and concerned whether it is a bad idea to keep looking. I thought I’d share some experience, from both perspectives; as a professional recruiter, recruiting for all kinds and sizes of companies for 10 years, as well as a candidate. I’ve been on the other side of the fence for sure many times. When I arrived in Ireland in 2010, in the middle of the biggest economic recession many of us have seen in their lives, I was told that I am making a big mistake. I was told I won’t get a job in a country that thousands had left and more had been leaving at the time due to loss of jobs. Yet I managed to secure the job within the first month and successfully kicked off my career and life of an ex-pat.
Like many of you, I’ve risked uncertainty and no income for the vision of better opportunity and growth. I can relay how stressful and silly it may seem to most who like the comfort of safety, but should fear really stop us from progressing?
And that is the question I believe candidates should ask themselves when they see a role they are interested in while in a seemingly safe position.
Not every crisis must necessarily have a negative impact on our career. There are still opportunities out there and putting the progress on hold may only prolong the journey towards your career goals.
The current situation can still be an excellent time to take a new job. After all, exploring your options doesn’t commit you to anything. Companies that continue hiring during challenging situations do so mostly to fill positions that are either of big importance to them or are projects that may not be impacted much by the crisis anyhow.
Why is now a better time to take a new job?
- The competition after the crisis will skyrocket with hundreds of thousands of applicants extremely keen to get back to work.
- Many candidates will have weeks or even months of upskilling and interview preparation behind them.
- Even if new exciting projects become available again in your company, who can guarantee that the company won’t go looking externally, knowing there’s a sea of great talent waiting?
- Companies that are hiring now will have shorter ramp-up in projects after the crisis than those who froze hiring completely.
- Not all companies have been affected by recent events and continue to thrive in their industry. They still have roles that they need to fill with priority. You can leverage this opportunity to increase your benefits and salary.
My aim, of course, isn’t to shake your confidence in keeping your job, nor to discredit any company’s loyalty to their hard-working people. But what I’ve learned and seen is that one of the worst situations you can put yourself into is the one when you feel without a choice. When you think you have no option but to wait.
I believe the best response to any crisis and hardship is to keep progressing and prosper. You shouldn’t feel like you have to postpone your development or your career progress.
Certainly, there are many pros and cons, ups and downs and hypothetical scenarios that flash through our minds when taking risks, but taking calculated risk isn’t reckless. I would say, if you worry about keeping your job now, you probably never had a safe job in the first place.
Don’t be scared to weigh your options and look around for better opportunity. Every gain carries a certain risk with it. That is life whether we are in crisis or not.
J.F.Kennedy said, “When written in Chinese, the word crisis is composed of two characters — one represents danger, and the other represents opportunity.”
Which of the 2 will you focus on and let it form your future? Danger? Or the Opportunity?
Technical & Operations Recruiter | Ammeon