Before you seek a transfer in your company or start hunting for a new job, consider whether your attitude is in the right place. As long as you're not running away from a difficult situation, expecting everything to be perfect in a new job or shirking your responsibilities, a job change might be a viable option. Making a list of pros and cons and evaluating whether the transfer has short- or long-term benefits can help you maintain perspective. It's best to keep long-term goals in mind and make a rational, non-impulsive decision about future employment.
Even though happiness comes and goes with almost any job situation, consider your overall job satisfaction. If you feel unhappy most of the time and continually think about doing something different, then changing jobs might be the best answer. Consider whether your unhappiness stems from temporary situations such as seasonal work pressures, short-term workforce changes, frustration with a particular client, trouble with co-workers or conflicts with your boss. Those types of issues are usually resolved with time. However, if your dissatisfaction stems from permanent issues, such as discontentment with your job responsibilities or unhappiness with your career path, a job change might be the right move.
If you're happy with your employment but your job responsibilities are boring, discuss the situation with your boss before making any permanent job changes. Your boss might be looking for someone to handle a new client or oversee a new project. When there's no new work flow and you've come to a dead end, consider a transfer within the company. According to the page entitled "Changing Jobs," on Portland Community College's website, job opportunities within your current company might be the best option, as a lateral move is often an easier process than leaving a company altogether. In a struggling economy, finding a new job can be a time-consuming process, and you don't want to risk losing your current job security.
Career advancement is a good reason to seek an internal job transfer or accept a new position, especially if the promotion keeps you on a career path that meets your long-term goals. According to "The New York Times" article "The Job Transfer: Look Before You Leap," employees should weigh the broader professional value of a transfer before they make a final decision. In many cases, a job promotion shows an employer that you have initiative and are willing to take job risks. You might feel a little out of place for a few months until you settle into the new position, but job change can also be exciting and energizing. Always consider practical issues, such as relocation costs and family needs, before you accept a new job.
When a job transfer or a new job opportunity allows you to have a better work-life balance, it might be the right choice. Possibly the new job allows you to spend more time with your family, enjoy hobbies or take time off. On the other hand, a job transfer might mean more office hours and heightened work demands. Even though a pay raise often accompanies a job transfer, money alone shouldn't be the deciding factor. Consider whether the new job opportunity adds value to your lifestyle and satisfies your personal and career goals.
As curriculum developer and educator, Kristine Tucker has enjoyed the plethora of English assignments she's read (and graded!) over the years. Her experiences as vice-president of an energy consulting firm have given her the opportunity to explore business writing and HR. Tucker has a BA and holds Ohio teaching credentials.