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Thursday, July 16, 2015

Why You Should Never Stay in the Same Job More Than 4 Years

The job market nowadays is tough. Long gone are the days when people used to spend their entire career life in the same or different positions but within a single company.
Today, we’re living in an age of job hopping, where regularly changing jobs is not only accepted, but encouraged.

This shift in the job trends is causing employers sleepless nights. It is becoming increasingly hard for an employer to be sure that his/her most valuable employee will still be with the company tomorrow. They come and go. Sometimes with good reasons sometimes with no explanation at all. 

Why is there rampant job promiscuity? 

We all agree that the current employment climate requires job seekers to be more agile. Therefore, you’ll discover that fewer and fewer people stay in one job for longer than three or four years. Here are four reasons you should also join the bandwagon.

1. Rapidly Evolving Skill Sets
It’s human nature to feel comfortable at their job and settle into a predictable routine. When you’re capable of performing your job diligently and competently, you may less motivated to try and improve or update your work skills regularly. If you are at this stage in your career, worry not – you’re not alone. However, it may be just the right time to check out what’s happening on the job market. Companies are constantly changing how they do business and how they recruit their staff. A skill necessary today may be obsolete tomorrow, and vice versa.
Look at the job requirements and see if they match your skill set. You may be astonished how much things have changed, as you may not be in a position to offer what employers are currently looking for.

2. Advancements in Technology
As technology evolves, so does the face of entire job industry. If your job is technical, keep yourself informed on what is what’s happening in your industry. While your current employer may not be adopting new technologies, its competitors out there might be.
If you’ve worked for a company for several years as a Windows systems administrator, for instance, entire lines of software and new hardware may be completely foreign to you. If you do not keep up with these changes, you may find it hard making the next step in your career. You don’t want to become a dinosaur in your industry by staying at a job for too long.

3. Perception
Imagine you’re on your first date you discover that your partner has just come out of a 15-year relationship. Think about how you would view that person and how they may relate to you. Unfair or not, you will start making weird assumption on your dates relationship longevity.  It portrays the person as less ambitious and at times hard to train. The prospective new employer may not be sure if you can adapt to a new culture. (For football lovers you can refer to what happened to Victor Valdes when he joined Manchester United after so many years with Bercelona). Questions like, why did this person leave his job after so many years? Are his skills? Is he motivated? and many more will arise and can be just enough to put off the employer completely.

4. Career Advancement

While you can work in the same company for ages, holding the same position for over four years can be problematic. If you aspiration is to evolve within your company, you should be looking to do so within the first two years. If you have been in the same job job position for four years, you may want to consider other options out there.
For instance, if you’re happy with your boss and the work but stuck in a no-growth position, try branching out to other departments or even fields. Additionally, strive take some courses that can help develop your skills. As usual, consult with your line manager since he’ll be in a better position to advise you on the best courses and the skills you may require to get that promotion. The key factor here is to keep moving forward.

A Word of Caution
Keep in mind that being job hopping a little too much can also be detrimental to your career. Jumping from one job to another, so often, can give the impression that you’re not dependable. Frequent job-hopping can also affect your seniority and leave you feeling that you’re taking a step backward whenever you join a new team.
As with anything in life, think carefully before making any major career decisions. Just don’t let yourself become stagnant where you are. Exploration is vital to keeping you excited and motivated about your work.

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