HomeOpinion & AnalysisColumnistsListen to the inner voice to make the right career moves

Listen to the inner voice to make the right career moves


MAKING a career move is a very important decision which requires serious thought and consideration. When we listen to our inner voice, it helps us be at peace with important decisions.

guest column: Emmanuel Zvada

If you are frustrated, tired or exhausted of working in the same environment or roles, it will be obvious that you will be looking for more challenging roles in your next career. Before you decide to change your job, you first need to ascertain if you are thinking of change for the right reasons, and not just because you’re having a bad day. In other words, you have to listen into your inner voice when direction to move to the next job is needed.

Looking for and getting better opportunities is generally a triumphant achievement for any employee or prospective job seeker. It entails that you are getting better than before and obviously you can expect better pay and benefits as well as opportunities to grow professionally. We must take note that not all career moves hold bright descriptions, neither will all of them always put you in a better position. Some can be a career suicide bomb that will be disastrous. In this article, I would like to highlight what you have to consider whenever you think of moving into any prospective job opportunity.
Know what you want

If you do not know yourself, you will end up doing anything and regret at a later stage. Even during interviews, they ask “tell us about yourself” for them to assess if you are the perfect match. Even some of those who are searching for better jobs in line with their career they really do not know what they want. Knowing what you want to do with your life is not easy.

Sometimes, you may confuse what you want with what others expect of you. To figure out exactly what you want, you will need to go the extra mile in decision making. When you do not know what you want, it can be helpful to get a clear idea of what your values are. Start by making a list of what is important to you.

Personal goals are also important when deciding on career moves. This is when you weigh alternatives that are consistent with your overall career goals. This should be the starting point for any decision you are going to make on which career options to pursue. If the options you are considering are not aligned with your plans and goals, you will need to assess if the move will be beneficial in terms of non-monetary and monetary benefits in the long run.

Assess prospective job security

Where there is job security there is great assurance that an employee has about the continuity of remaining in employment. This is what someone has to consider before moving to the next job, it will be pointless to move from your job to another where there is no security.

Job security usually arises from the terms of the contract of employment and also how the company abides with the regulations governing that particular industry.

Nature of job versus remuneration

Moving on to a more challenging job means that you will soon be handling bigger and more important tasks. Your decisions will now count towards your company’s overall competitiveness.

You ought to prepare yourself to accept such responsibilities. The nature of decisions you are required to make should also be assessed and see if they complement the remuneration and benefits you will be given.

As much as you want to grow in line with your career, there should be reasonable remuneration. Also, check the type of work you will be doing in your new job. If it does not look attractive or enjoyable, then do not take up the job. It is not good to do a job that you do not have interest in as this will be a source of stress.

Consider your Job title versus your grade

In simple terms a “job role” is a description of what a person does whereas a “job title” is a convenient name for the specific roles that a particular person carries. So, a job title speaks to certain abilities and typical tasks based on training and experience, but also speaks to the level of the job within the organisation.

Before moving to the next job, check if the title you are being given matches with the grade you are in as well as the level of responsibilities and accountability expected of you.

If you detect a wage distortion in your pay grade, do not budge. It would be better to just stay in your position, handle the same workload, and still be paid the same amount. However, the situation may be different if it is a promotion in line with your profession. A promotion is not always desirable.

What you may want to do is to consider if the promotion is something that would open up opportunities to try newer and better things in other industries, then it may be worth it to bear the burden. It will pay off in the long run.

Look for better, not perfect.

It is easy to get frustrated when job hunting because you cannot find what really suits you. It should be noted there is no “perfect” job for you and there never will be. Instead, identify specific characteristics of a job that would be “better” than your current position and then more interesting opportunities will surface. If you focus on job hopping, it is not good for your career growth.

A lot of people have fallen into the trap of thinking that the sole point of working is to bring home enough money to live comfortably. While adequate compensation is important in any job, it is not everything.

If you are unsatisfied with what you do every day, it will affect your physical and mental health. You may feel burned out and upset, nervous and depressed if you are on a mismatched career path.

You are more likely to be successful in a career that you feel passionate about. If you do not feel like working, quit and be an entrepreneur, maybe that’s where your calling is.

What is important is to listen to the inner voice and make informed decisions that you will not regret in future.

Emmanuel Zvada is a human capital consultant and international recruitment expert. He writes in his personal capacity

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