Are you in a job where you are not happy? Perhaps you were working stupidly long hours consistently without an end in sight? Maybe you don’t enjoy working for your boss or within the culture you operate? It could be the nature of the work you do; not stimulating, challenging or rewarding? Or you could just feel like you need to do the work you are doing to avoid a career limiting situation.
We see this all of the time. However, the feedback we get from it usually goes something like this.
I don’t like it, but…
“I’m not sure the grass will be greener”
“I don’t have time to interview”
“My boss has me on a project and I’m very busy”
“I have a deadline coming so it is hard to think about changing”
“I don’t want to waste time with recruiters”
It is sad to watch good people feel they should lock themselves into something that doesn’t make get them out of the morning with a spring in their step. Don’t get me wrong, work isn’t always going to be sunshine and rainbows, but the challenges we take on should contributor to growth, learning or development, not just frustration and dread.
So what can you do?
When it comes down to it, there are only three options if you find you’re not happy with your job.
1. Change Your Perspective
You might find the work frustrating or below your potential. You might work with a dysfunctional boss or a challenging business environment. However, assuming it makes sense, look at these issues through a positive lens and see the opportunity.
“The work isn’t that exciting, but while I’m here, I’m going to find projects to build and grow”
“My boss isn’t on play, but I can see their weaknesses as a reflection of them and not me. Maybe I can work around this and still succeed” (Not always easy, but sometimes achievable).
“The company is struggling, but there are experiences I can development as I work through the turnaround”
Although, sometimes things have gone too far and you need to put the power in your hands.
2. Take Action
Not happy? Find a place that will make you happy.
Get out there and engage with people to learn about places or roles that might motivate you.
Where could I go?
What does the right role look like?
What is my value proposition to a future employer?
Who can help me?
Then do something about it. Put time aside, meet people and explore what makes sense for you and have an open mind to it.
Here’s the truth – it is time-consuming and occasionally you will hit dead ends. The less you’ve invested into your career and networks previously, the harder it will be. But getting out of your comfort zone is an option to find a great job. And that right role will always exist unless you are unrealistic.
3. Do Nothing
No one else has to live your life and your career. So if you hate your job or you don’t feel you’re reaching your potential, you could just put up with it. Slightly illogical, but people do it all the time. We see many who see it easier to deal with the pain than to make the effort to get out there and get what they deserve (or want).
As someone that works with finance leaders and career conscious professionals all of the time, the obvious recommendation it to consider a combination of the first two; your perspective and your action. Put yourself first.
I know, it sounds simple, but so many people need this reminder. If you needed it, I hope it was a polite and practical way of saying “respect yourself and your career”.
Richard Holmes is Co-Founder & Director of HPR Consulting, a leading Accounting & Finance recruitment business in Sydney, Australia.
He has been in the Executive Search & Selection Industry since 2003 and has developed a track record of recruiting senior Accounting, Finance and Commercial professionals into leading ASX listed, private and multinational organisations. Passionate about talent, he has an in-depth knowledge of the Sydney market and brings a significant amount of intellectual property to his clients and candidates.