Job-hop­ping is not ex­actly bad un­less…

Business World - - LABOR & MANAGEMENT - el­bo­

I’m 24 years old and have been with my cur­rent em­ployer for the past three years now. A col­lege class­mate is sug­gest­ing that I join him in his com­pany that is on the look­out for peo­ple with my qual­i­fi­ca­tions. I’m hav­ing sec­ond thoughts as I’m happy with my cur­rent boss who is an ex­cel­lent men­tor and gives me the chance to achieve my full po­ten­tial. On the other hand, I’d like to move away from my in­dus­try-av­er­age pay and perks. Given that sit­u­a­tion, what’s your best ad­vice for me? — Greener Pas­tures.

A lady cel­e­brat­ing her 98th birthday was asked by her teenage grand­daugh­ter what she en­joyed the most about her ad­vanced age. She replied: “The lack of peer pres­sure.” How can you ar­gue with an old woman like her? She’s worth a for­tune, with sil­ver in her hair, gold in her teeth, stones in her kid­ney, and gas in her stom­ach.

At your young age, I can un­der­stand the peer pres­sure that you’ve been go­ing through. That’s the trend among young peo­ple. Mil­len­nial work­ers don’t nec­es­sar­ily want to work for more than 30 years in one com­pany, like their par­ents who re­ceived a gold watch and re­tire­ment cash ben­e­fits on their last day. Not only that, you’re also angling for a higher com­pen­sa­tion pack­age, which you can pos­si­bly get from a new em­ployer. But what if your boss turns out to be a toxic one, who doesn’t care about your ca­reer as­pi­ra­tion? Then what’s next? Of course, you’ve no other re­course but to job-hop once again. Look for an­other em­ployer — which is a prac­ti­cal thing to do. When you’re a mil­len­nial, your best ap­proach is to do a lot of job-hop­ping un­til you reach age 40. Af­ter that, you should be able to find a sta­ble job with lu­cra­tive pay, ex­cel­lent work en­vi­ron­ment — and of course, an ex­cel­lent boss who can en­gage and em­power you so much so that you don’t need close su­per­vi­sion.

Does this mean you can’t go job- hop­ping at 40? It’s your call, but note that most em­ploy­ers who could be a bit older than you frown on job-hop­pers. Be­sides, at 40 you tend to lose fo­cus on your ca­reer vi­sion as you give more weight to your fam­ily in­ter­ests than any­thing which is also good thing for any rea­son­able in­di­vid­ual.

As long as there are no big­ger is­sues with your ca­reer, pay pack­age, and work re­la­tion­ship with your cur­rent boss or col­leagues, then you should stay put where you are. Re­mem­ber this. The best place to find a help­ing hand is at the end of one’s wrist. How­ever, it’s nec­es­sary to help some­one find that hand by hold­ing it for a longer time. It’s too ba­sic to be ig­nored in any re­la­tion­ship.

The trou­ble is that most young peo­ple of your age de­cide poorly when a job op­por­tu­nity comes along. In­stead, peer pres­sure be­comes a fac­tor, and at times, fam­ily weighs in as well. There­fore, how do you man­age the sit­u­a­tion, in the event you de­cide to try your luck with an­other em­ployer? Here are some tips and tech­niques that you can try for size:

One, do your home­work about your prospec­tive em­ployer. Don’t rely solely on the rec­om­men­da­tion of your friends and fam­ily, even if their in­ten­tions are pure. The In­ter­net, par­tic­u­larly so­cial me­dia, is an ocean of in­for­ma­tion that can give you enough facts and fig­ures that can be used to match the com­pany’s un­writ­ten “cul­ture” with your per­sonal val­ues and ca­reer as­pi­ra­tions, among others.

For ex­am­ple, would you want to be associated with an em­ployer that has a long his­tory and var­i­ous cases of tax eva­sion, la­bor dis­putes, hu­man right is­sues, among other things? How about the fair treat­ment of work­ers in terms of pro­mo­tion and salary in­creases which are com­mon in com­pa­nies with two sets of ac­count­ing books and pay­roll list­ing, if you know what I mean?

Two, be con­cerned about the lo­ca­tion of your new job. Be prac­ti­cal. Th­ese days, with road con­ges­tion go­ing from bad to worse, it is equally im­por­tant to con­sider the length of time you’ll be spend­ing on the road than with your cur­rent em­ployer. Even if the new com­pany of­fers some­thing to com­pen­sate for your com­mute, would it be enough in the long term?

There­fore, it’s bet­ter to stick with your present job, un­less the new em­ployer of­fers a per­ma­nent pol­icy on telecom­mut­ing, flex­itime or any re­lated pro­gram that can give you flex­i­bil­ity and work-life bal­ance.

Three, be trans­par­ent about your ca­reer as­pi­ra­tions. Job in­ter­views are a won­der­ful op­por­tu­nity to test if there’s a pos­si­ble good match be­tween you and your prospec­tive em­ployer. There’s no guar­an­tee, how­ever, that your new em­ployer would not change his mind about his “cam­paign” prom­ise. If that hap­pens, once again, go on ac­tively ex­plor­ing an­other op­por­tu­nity… un­til you reach 40.

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