There has never been a better time to quit your job and find a new one.
(I can sense you spluttering from afar.)
(You’re thinking that it’s easy for me to say.)
(You’re thinking I might be certifiably nuts.)
(You’re thinking that I don’t know what it’s reeeeaaaallly like out there, especially for someone who’s young or old or whatever you’ve got going on in your life.)
But I know I’m right about this.
In the county where I used to live, Arlington County in Virginia, unemployment is at 2.2%. That’s a full two percent less than the U.S. average. I’ve talked to hiring people in Arlington and they have open jobs which they cannot fill. Good jobs.
I spoke to a client this past week who’s facing the same issue in Washington, DC. Open positions, no candidates.
Around the U.S., there are a record 6.6 million job openings.
Makes you go “Hmmmmm”, doesn’t it?
Because you’ve been stiff-arming a search for a new job. Sure, it’s crossed your mind. But you think:
- Job searches are a pain in the butt and take forever
- No one will hire me because I’m under 30/over 50
- What if no one wants me?
- What if I find out my skills aren’t that great?
- What if I land in a place that’s even more toxic than the place I’m in now?
Shall we knock those down, one at a time?
- With unfilled jobs across the board, finding a new role is going to be easier than ever
- People who might have previously been excluded are now included, because jobs must be filled. If you’re qualified, you’ll get a look
- See “unfilled jobs across the board”
- If you’ve stayed current with your skills in your current role, you should be OK. If you haven’t, take an online course to brush up your skillset
- Toxic work place? Let’s drill down on that one
“According to a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and Yale University report, 70 percent of all jobs are found through networking. A recent survey by CareerXroads shows that only 15 percent of positions were filled through job boards. The survey showed that most jobs are either filled internally or through referrals.” (Washington Post) If you, then, focus on networking and generating referrals for your new job, you can ask about the work environment and office politics. If your friends (the people who are doing the referring) say the place is gruesomely toxic, you can pass on that opportunity in favor of the kind of workplace where it’s an utter pleasure to work.
Those workplaces exist, by the way.
And, studies have shown that income changes more significantly when you start a new role versus small annual increases at your current job.
So, a better workplace plus more money! What’s not to like?
You might say, “But I love living where I live and there are no jobs like you’re talking about here!”
What I hear you say is more about your priorities than anything else. Where you live is more important than what you do.
Which is totally fine. In fact, it’s awesome.
You know what’s important to you – now, own it. Realize that your job exists to support your life, so if you’re unhappy at your job… you can still get a new one. Maybe you’ll have to consider a different field, a different kind of role, a new use of your skills. As long as you stay in your town (honoring your real priority), you should be fine. Plus, you know, happier.
The Great Recession, which happened ten years ago this week, impacted all of us. We got frightened, and gun shy, and maybe a little bit cowed when it came to work. We remember when a lot of our friends and family found themselves out of a job and had a hard time finding something. Anything.
And so we’ve carried that trauma forward with us in a collective way.
Now is the time to lay down that burden, once and for all.
There are jobs out there. Good jobs. Lots of them.
If you’re not happy where you are, go somewhere else.
And if you’re an employer who’s not doing everything you can to make your workplace a good place to work with good pay for all – get ready. People can leave you in a hot minute these days – and they will if you neglect your greatest asset. Your people.