career

Should I Jump Jobs For More Money?

iStockphoto.com |  macro frog insect animal

iStockphoto.com | macro frog insect animal

A recent Bloomberg article on the labor market, “Job Switchers in U.S. Tech, Construction, Are Getting the Biggest Raises,” (07/24/19) showed that in the month of June people who switched jobs averaged wage growth of 5.3%, with the sector technology clocking in at 9.7% wage growth. Wow!

With low unemployment, the current labor market has tilted in favor of the employee. In short, the job market is hot. Companies are trying harder to attract workers, so now seems like the right time to jump jobs before the global economy slows down and the labor market contracts.

So, let’s say you’ve got a job offer on your desk, and it includes a hefty increase in salary over what your current company pays. How do you evaluate whether to consider new opportunities based on money?

  • You need to ask yourself – “Is the grass actually greener?” Offering more money than what you’re making now is one of the easiest ways a company can attract attention. An employer will conduct cost/benefit analysis of what can be offered to prospective employees, and based on those budgets they It’s an effective lever, and that is why there is greater wage growth at bigger companies (who have deeper pockets) than at smaller ones – they have the resources to offer more. However, salary is only one component of a compensation package. Do your own cost-benefit analysis. It may or may not be worth it.

  • Remember those numbers from the article – 5.3% (average) and 9.7% (tech) wage growth? If you have a salary of $65,000 your 5.3% increase would be to $68,500, or an increase of $3,500. A 9.7% increase would total $71,300, or an increase of $6,300! That’s not a terrible place to start. But there may be hidden pitfalls. A salary increase may put you in a higher tax range, or there may be employee benefits you have now, like a 401(K), that are not offered in the new job. Run the numbers.

  • More money does not make a job better, nor does it automatically make your quality of your life better. As you look at other opportunities, really examine all the facets of the job. Simple factors like commuting distance, transportation, parking, and daycare can easily offset some of the financial gains.

  • Assess the risk. Jumping from one job to another is a risk every time. If you switch jobs too often, it may have a boomerang effect as potential employers may (fairly or unfairly) question whether you’ll stick around or leave as soon as somebody offers you even more money. And try to remember – company loyalty to employees is as much a thing of the past as Julius Caesar; all too often, excited new hires can end up in the unemployment line months after their start date when a corporate buyout or layoff occurs.

  • You've run the numbers, assessed the risks of the new company, and the jump still looks good. Now do the same for your current situation. Ask yourself, “Am I happy in this job?” What would you be leaving behind? Pension? Benefits? Growth opportunities? A promotion? Co-workers with whom you’ve become friends?  Run it through all the quadrants, so to speak, and come up with your “true value” of staying and your “true cost” of leaving.

  • Corporate culture. This is the all-important wild card. If you have “found your people,” that is much bigger than dollars and cents. If you are happy where you are, and why you are there, your unique “fit” with a company may be worth way more than a few thousand dollars. Especially if your new employer has a reputation for being a “challenging” environment.


Philip Roufail contributed to this article.

Scott Singer is the President and Founder of Insider Career Strategies Resume Writing & Career Coaching, a firm dedicated to guiding job seekers and companies through the job search and hiring process. Insider Career Strategies provides resume writing, LinkedIn profile development, career coaching services, and outplacement services, including a free resume review. You can email Scott Singer at scott.singer@insidercs.com, or via the website, www.insidercareerstrategies.com.

7 Tips For Navigating Negative Career Feedback

iStockphoto.com |  Feodora Chiosea

iStockphoto.com | Feodora Chiosea

Nobody rolls out of bed in the morning and thinks, “I hope I get some negative feedback at work today.”

No one enjoys criticism, especially professional criticism. When we receive feedback at work, the likely reaction is a (sometimes justified) fear that the feedback is a precursor to unemployment. However, feedback – positive and negative – plays an important role in the overall success of an organization, and the personal development of the employee. The good news is that you can learn how to process and utilize negative feedback to help your career instead of inhibit it.

Corporate culture has evolved into an interactive environment with a constant feedback loop. Annual/quarterly reviews have given way to an ongoing structure that is flexible and nimble enough to resolve issues, whether company-wide or individual, in real time. That means constant feedback.

Here are some tips to demystify negative feedback, help you and your career grow, and help create better work relationships.

  1. Be open to feedback. When you walk into your manager’s office and receive professional criticism, it is very easy to get defensive. Even though the feedback is work related, it feels personal, and may seem like an existential threat to your livelihood. Do your best to be calm, objective about your own performance, and to listen. Take notes.

  2. Remember, the conversation is probably documented. Whether part of a regular scheduled review, or an unexpected performance appraisal, the results will most likely go into your personnel file. It is in your best interests to maintain a professional demeanor throughout the process.

  3. Understand your manager’s position. Chances are your Manager doesn’t like to give negative feedback any more than you like receiving it. However, providing feedback is most likely a requirement of his or her job, and is necessary if he or she has an interest in your career development. Either way, your manager should be giving you feedback, and you should want it as it provides you the tools to move your career forward.

  4. Negative feedback is an opportunity. I know what you’re thinking: “I should want negative feedback? That’s crazy talk!” Negative feedback gives you an opportunity to self-correct and to develop personally and professionally. If you are not receiving regular, valuable feedback, then request it. You need to build that loop so you will control the conversation. It is in your best interests to have reviews that are more about development, and less about performance.

  5. Understand the real message. Managers may not be trained to give feedback in a clear or positive way. The true message, for example, may be buried under a mountain of operational issues, or missed sales goals. But what does the feedback have to do with you? Ask for clarification is necessary.

  6. Perception can be reality. If a perceived issue is surfaced that you believe is off the mark, you must change the perception. Speak up in a reasonable and sensible way. Defend yourself without being defensive (easy, right?).

  7. Compartmentalize the feedback. You’ve walked out your manager’s office. Even the most enlightened employee, who is wise enough to use all our excellent suggestions, is going to feel numb. No one enjoys criticism. To the best of your ability, decompress and detach yourself from the feedback. When ready, process it in as objective a way as possible, determine (to the best of your ability) how you can use it to improve your job performance and, more importantly, advance your personal career development.


Philip Roufail contributed to this article.

Scott Singer is the President and Founder of Insider Career Strategies Resume Writing & Career Coaching, a firm dedicated to guiding job seekers and companies through the job search and hiring process. Insider Career Strategies provides resume writing, LinkedIn profile development, career coaching services, and outplacement services, including a free resume review. You can email Scott Singer at scott.singer@insidercs.com, or via the website, www.insidercareerstrategies.com.

7 Essential Social Media Tips For Career-Minded Professionals

iStockphoto.com |  Gwengoat

iStockphoto.com | Gwengoat

In the beginning of the Oscar award winning film “Gladiator,” Maximus, played by Russell Crowe, gives his soldiers a rousing pre-battle speech and says this amazing line, “What we do in life echoes through eternity.” As goes for gladiators, goes for social media. Your online presence lasts pretty much forever.

Employers may look at your social media profiles when deciding whether to hire you; it’s not an unreasonable assumption. And even if you deleted everything on every one of your online profiles ten years ago, it’s could still be just one advanced Google search away. Sorry to say, but there truly is no escape from your digital past.

As of July 2019, here are the Top 10 Social Media Platforms worldwide according to Statista.com:

1.     Facebook

2.     YouTube

3.     WhatsApp

4.     Facebook Messenger

5.     WeChat

6.     Instagram

7.     QQ

8.     Q Zone

9.     Douyin / Tik Tok

10.  Weibo

 

You need to be aware of how you’re presented on each site. Here are seven tips to help you manage your Social Media presence so that you can become – and remain – gainfully employed. 

1.     Even though Social Media is still the age of a teenager, there is already an old axiom that applies: Don’t put anything on Social Media that you wouldn’t want your Mom to see.

2.     Social Media means never having to say goodbye. As long as the Internet is live, so is the picture of you chugging rum from a pineapple while wearing a bunny suit. Might have been fun times, but not so much fun great when a hiring manger finds it, much less notices that you posted it at 6 a.m. when you closed down the bar. Today. On Tuesday.

3.     Be conscious of where and how you present your political point of view online. We live in an emotionally charged and divisive political climate and you cannot control the snap judgments others will make about a seemingly innocuous post or comment. On business-oriented social media, such as LinkedIn, it might be advisable to steer clear of political topics.

4.     Likewise, it’s generally advisable to keep personal matters on socially oriented platforms (i.e., Facebook) rather than professional platforms (i.e., LinkedIn). And while we’re on the topic ­– it’s not a bad idea to check your Facebook/Instagram/etc. privacy settings so that only your friends and family have access to your photos and conversations.

5.     Many social media platforms (LinkedIn included) have “comment” sections, which are a breeding ground for internet trolls and flame wars. Comments are just as public as official posts, so if you’re active on platforms or forums with comment sections, you may want to consider any potential professional ramifications before you tell @area51conspiracy he or she is the “world’s biggest moron,” and that you hope they, “die in a hail of bullets.” That “moron” could be in a position to make a hiring decision on your candidacy.

6.     Be conscious of your tone, too. Social media is just that – social. You may have written posts or comments to family or friends that had an intentionally snarky tone deliberately chosen for effect. While you and your friends who share a collective sense of humor may find your repartee hilarious, others might be turned off or offended. It’s not fair, but people observe how you interact with others and form a perception of you based on that, right or wrong, fair or not. If someone believes you are condescending online, they might believe you will be condescending to them in the workplace.

7.     This list has been filled with negativity (sorry), but here’s a good one. Make sure to explore the job portals on the various social media platforms! Naturally, LinkedIn has a robust job postings section, but companies are starting to wake up to the idea that the social social media platforms are where all the people are hanging out! As time progresses, you’ll continue to see more and more companies building job portals Facebook and other sites to reach key users. Don’t miss out!


Philip Roufail contributed to this article.

Scott Singer is the President and Founder of Insider Career Strategies Resume Writing & Career Coaching, a firm dedicated to guiding job seekers and companies through the job search and hiring process. Insider Career Strategies provides resume writing, LinkedIn profile development, career coaching services, and outplacement services, including a free resume review. You can email Scott Singer at scott.singer@insidercs.com, or via the website, www.insidercareerstrategies.com.