How often should you change jobs? How to manage your career
How long is just right?
However, moving to soon, too often, means you take two steps forward, but one back with each move, rather then any meaningful leaps. It will hold you back in the long run. In order to make the next move significant, you need to stay long enough to make an impact, gain meaningful experience and make a contribution to your present employer. The latter is important, since hiring managers look for achievements on cvs, ideally quantified – you need to stay long enough to accomplish something.
In addition to achievements, hiring managers will look at how long you have stayed in roles for an indication of what they can expect should they hire you. They will be thinking long-term, and want employees who can be part of their growth plans. A cv with numerous short spells won’t be appealing, in order words, and we often see candidates turned down for this reason. A well-managed career needs to have at least one lengthier spell with an employer. Not only will this allow you to take significant steps forwards, but it will also demonstrate to future employers that you have the ability to ‘stick it out’.
In general, we would say 4 years is a good length to stay in a job. However, older professionals may need longer than this in order to make an impact and build significant achievements. They will want their accomplishments to be as visible as possible, and this can take longer.
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The big picture
Is it possible to stay too long?
The short answer to this is yes. We have known clients reject candidates on the basis that they have spent most of their careers with one company, triggering the concern that they might be institutionalised, and will find it difficult to adapt to a new environment. There is also the danger that your career will stagnate as your employer may run out of career progression possibilities. As the song says, breaking up is hard to do, but sometimes it is the only way to achieve growth!
If you are considering your next move, or would like an informal chat, please contact us on 01525 864 372 / [email protected].
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