Millennials are known for job hopping.
No seriously — Forbes said it so it must be true.
But besides a major news source saying it’s so, I’ve experienced it in my own life — through my own life choices and through watching my friends do the same.
Why Do We Do It?
We want to find purpose. We want to make a difference. We want to know where “this” is going.
In my case, I never intended on actually staying in business. I was an actress for so many years — I just never thought I’d want to settle down with the right job. Then I just couldn’t find the right job. This resulted in a series of job hopping — and yes, even though I’ve learned a great deal in all my jobs, I regret job hopping.
Why Shouldn’t We Do It?
Seriously. It does both the company and yourself a disservice.
You’ll cost the company a lot of time and money in training and investing in you. This means that the year of experience you gained as a sales rep counts for nothing because you won’t even get a good recommendation out of it.
Future companies will be wary of hiring you. Okay, if you leave a job in a year one time, maybe it won’t count against you. But if your entire resume has a year here, a half year there, and so on, you just shot yourself in the foot.
What Should We Do Instead?
Stick with a job. If you like the company, you like your manager, and you like the job okay (meaning it’s not killing your soul), try to find ways to enjoy it. Sign up for development classes (your company will probably pay for them), volunteer to do new things you enjoy (and will help your department in some way), and show some team spirit (if you act like you like the job, you may actually start to like it).
Just ask. If you’re really miserable, don’t just assume it’s time to leave. Talk to your manager about it — in a very diplomatic way. You may not be able to find a new job within the company immediately, but if it’s on both your radars, something could come up in the future.
Also – you’d be surprised how many jobs will let you telecommute, at least one day a week. Working from home or from Starbucks can be a really nice break. And honestly — I don’t know about you, but I get a heck of a lot done when I’m telecommuting.
I’ve had some really great responses on my Facebook page. I wanted to share them and then add my own clarifying statements.
One friend said:
There’s a flip side to this. When used in moderation, changing companies can really juice your career. Staying where you are usually means that your average raise will be 1-5%, but by switching jobs, you can look at increases of 20 – 40%. If you get yourself into a different pay bracket relatively early, over the course of a career, between additional pay and the ability to save more, you’re likely looking at millions of dollars that you would’ve left on the table by being complacent.
Yes. This is strategically job hopping. Also — I’m not sure if he means he would stick with a job for three or four years and then search, or six months to a year and then hop. Either way, it seems like it was a good choice for him. I think future employers could see if you’re trying to build your career or if you’re just haphazardly switching jobs. If you’re in sales for one year, retail the next, and are applying to a law firm, they might have some questions. If you’ve been in financial planning all along, it’s a different story.
Another friend said:
There’s another point somewhat untouched here – the post is referring to job-hopping voluntarily; but for lots of folks, job hopping can become more of the norm because contracts end, temp-to-hire positions go with someone else, and people have to pay the bills. Id be hard-pressed to believe that hopping from a retail job to a temp to hire position that pays five dollars more, while a gamble, would be looked down upon in this economy.
Temp and seasonal positions are certainly out of your control. Not much you can do there. And I know the climate is hard in terms of finding employment, so people are under a certain amount of duress. And like my first friend said, if you need to switch jobs to find something more steady that pays more, then that makes sense. But certainly, this is a valid point.
Anything else I missed?? Leave it in the comments! Let’s discuss!
- Have you been a job hopper? How has it hurt or helped your career?
- Any other advice for those job hoppers out there?