Huffpost Business
The Blog

Featuring fresh takes and real-time analysis from HuffPost's signature lineup of contributors

Fred Whelan and Gladys Stone Headshot

Leave My Job in This Market?

Posted: Updated:

You've been itching to leave your job for a while now and nothing exciting has cropped up in your current company. A recruiter calls with a great opportunity. In the past you would have jumped at this. But this time, there's a nagging voice that's telling you "You can't leave your job in this market. If you do, and there are layoffs in the new company, then you'll be first to go." So, you stay put wondering if you are making a big mistake by not pursuing this potential dream job.

Should you stay or should you go?

Before you decide to pass on this great opportunity, consider this:

1.The New Company is Hiring - While there are no guarantees, the fact that the new company is hiring in this economic climate is a good sign. Companies that are hiring in down markets are usually in industries that are not as negatively impacted by the recession. Because of this, they are less likely to be downsizing in the near future.

2.There's a Need for the Position - This new position is part of some strategic plan that they just put in place. After all, if they didn't value the position, they wouldn't be hiring for it. So, don't automatically assume that if a layoff does occur that this position will be affected. During the course of your interviewing, find out from the company how this position fits into their long term strategic plans. If they see it as something that is integral to their long term future, that's a good sign. Even if there are layoffs and you're new, don't assume that all layoffs are a function of tenure - LIFO (last in, first out).

3.Great Jobs Don't Come Along Every Day - You can't steal second with your foot on first. As Oprah says, "The greatest risk is never daring to risk". If you never put yourself in a position of potential risk, you will significantly reduce your ability to advance your career. This job sounds like a great opportunity because it is! The greater risk might be staying where you are.

4. There's No Security Where You Are - Wouldn't you kick yourself if you didn't take the new job for fear of being laid off, only to get laid off from your current company? No job carries with it a "lifetime guarantee", so you need to actively and consistently evaluate your career to determine when a job move is warranted.

5. It Ain't Happening at Your Current Company - This isn't a dig at your current company, it just means that this great new job doesn't exist where you are. If your current company can't offer other challenging positions, then it's just a matter of time before you'll leave anyway. If you decide to wait until the market turns around, you'll miss out on this great opportunity.

If you are presented with a great new job opportunity evaluate all the pros and cons carefully, but realize that advancing your career can sometimes entail a certain degree of risk. There are no guarantees in life. You can minimize that risk by doing your homework, but don't let the fear of what might happen down the road prevent you from taking advantage of what appears to be a good career choice.

Fred & Gladys
Whelan Stone
Executive Search and Coaching
Authors of GOAL! Your 30 Day Career Plan for Business & Career Success