Having recently decided to make a career change myself and move to OpenView Labs as a Recruiting Analyst, I thought it would make sense to write my first blog post explaining what to think about when making a career change. For most people, this can be a difficult decision.

So, you got an offer and now have the task of deciding whether to accept the offer or stay where you are. What’s next?

What to think about:

  • What was your original motivation for considering a move? There was a reason that you applied for the position or spoke to the recruiter that contacted you. There was even more of a reason for you to interview. What was that reason? Was it lack of interest in the work that you are doing? Was it management, the culture, salary, etc.? Compensation is an obvious factor, but most of the time there are other aspects of your job that cause you to leave. Go back to that initial motivation; think about what is different about the new position or company and if it meets the requirements that you were looking for to make a move. On the other hand, consider if there is the possibility of anything changing in the near future at your current company that would make things better.
  • Culture plays a big part in whether or not you are happy and driven to go to work every morning. Do you like the culture at your current company? Is the culture at the new company the same/different? This is something you should have gotten an idea about during the interview process by asking the right questions to get a feel for the type of work environment you will be immersed in. Assess if the difference in culture will impact your career satisfaction in a positive or negative manner, or not at all.
  • Imagine yourself in 3 months with both scenarios. If you stay in your current position, do you picture yourself happy? Has anything changed? Now, if you take the new job, are you happy? Do you regret moving?

Things you can’t let get in the way:

  • People – Building a network is important and that network will stay with you. Stay in touch with your former colleagues/managers. Loyalty will, of course, come into play but you need to be selfish with this decision.
  • Counteroffers – There are many statistics related to accepting a counteroffer and none of them are good. They show that the majority of people that do accept them end up somewhere else in 6 months to a year down the road anyway.

In the end, if you are unhappy with your current job, salary aside, you need to assess the reasons why and whether your new opportunity improves on those deficiencies. Otherwise you will end up in the exact same situation. When making your final decision, eliminate emotional connections to current colleagues, and all opinions of people who aren’t important in your life. Clear your head and realize that the decision is yours, so make the one that makes the most sense for you, your family, and your career.

Image Provided By: Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net