He says that the nature of employment is changing, and more young workers are job hopping due to a variety of reasons – there’s a lot more contract or part-time work, combined with layoffs and salary freezes that can push people around to different jobs. But frequently moving around doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll climb the corporate ladder faster, and staying put might not earn you significant salary increases.
I look back at my career so far, and it’s obvious I’ve been a job hopper:
- Writer in the provincial government (6 months)
- Marketing Coordinator in municipal government (12 months, + $17,000)
- Marketing Coordinator in non-profit (8 months, - $5,000)
- Marketing Coordinator in real estate (18 months, + $6,000)
- Marketing Coordinator in apparel (20 months, + $2,000)
- Freelance Writer (12 months, + $7,000)
- Marketing Manager – current job (6 months, + $8,000)
But, aside from one job move (this is when I moved to Vancouver), my salary has increased (sometimes significantly) over the previous position – to the point where I’ve more than doubled my salary since I started working. If I were still working in the provincial government, I’d likely enjoy modest cost-of-living increases, and perhaps a promotion or two – but I’m pretty confident there’s no way my salary would have increased as much had I not kept jumping around.
The article says that people who stay long-term with a company often take salary increases when offered to them, but don’t necessarily know what they’re really worth compared to people outside of the organization. And I think in a lot of cases, that’s true. But there are plenty of good reasons to stick it out with a company – great people, great benefits, flexibility, believing in what you’re doing, etc.
That being said, I’ve never stayed long enough at a job to be promoted, or really feel like I’ve made a difference or contributed in a significant way. I think that will change with my current job. I see myself here long term. There’s endless opportunities to grow the position, as well as myself as an employee, and I think that’s what I’ve been looking for while I was job hopping. None of the other positions felt right. This one does, even if it’s in an industry I might never would have considered early on in my career.
Bryan’s article concludes by saying the best resumes show a combination of loyalty and leaving. After making a few moves to different companies, it’s in your best interest to spend longer amounts of time with a single organization – and after job hopping for so long, I would agree with that. The way I see it, it’s kind of like dating. When you first start dating, you might have a few relationships (and break-ups) before you really figure out what you want, and what works best for you. And once you find something that fits your personality and your goals, well, you hang onto it. :)