Four Questions Job Seekers Need To Ask Themselves Before They Start Looking

Here are the top questions you should ask yourself before starting the interview process. 

changing jobs

When we were all waiting for the clock to strike 12 on New Year's Eve, many people decided to make resolutions to change their lives in 2023. Some wanted to live healthier, have a better work-life balance, or, for example, change jobs. How can we know that we are truly ready for a new role or when it is time to start looking? Nobody likes wasting their time, and going through rounds of interviewing and walking away at the end can hurt your professional reputation. Here are the top questions you should ask yourself before starting the interview process.

Loyalty Or Scarcity?

When somebody has been with the same company for more than five consecutive years, we, as recruiters, think it may be time to see what is out there. I'm not suggesting that everybody has to start looking immediately then, but it may become more challenging year by year to switch later. We all have a friend or family member who was laid off after 10, 15 or even 20 years, and they couldn't stick to any other company for more than a year after that. This is just human nature. It is very hard to change gears after a long time, and you may not be as open to coaching and learning or adapting to new circumstances later.

Does It Hurt Enough?

Many professionals show signs of burnout; they don't seem motivated anymore and believe that they have reached a plateau in their careers. That said, sometimes it doesn't hurt enough to change jobs. You may have many excuses why the timing is not right: you have a new boss who may appreciate their talents, the kids are still in school and your partner is expecting an intra-company transfer in the near future (which they have been waiting for more than a year or two now).

Am I Ready To Invest Time In My Job Search?

We have seen many times that a candidate applied for one of our advertised positions, and they have yet to answer our meeting requests. Or, for example, they showed up, but then they either went completely dark or suddenly didn't have time for interviewing. I believe that this is a clear sign that they are just not ready yet; they start to feel guilty for speaking with a recruiter. Sometimes they even say they would be interested in pursuing a certain opportunity, but they are just so busy at work that they can't sneak out or take a day off for an interview.

Am I Ready For A Counteroffer?

Some candidates go through the interview process and get an offer of employment. But, at the last moment, they turn down the opportunity because they decide to accept their current employers' counter. Yes, there are times when individual circumstances change, and people just have to stay where they are. Clarify with yourself how you feel about counter-offers before you start going through the process. If you know for sure that nothing in this world can change your mind about wanting to leave, then proceed with the interview. Otherwise, it is better to use everyone's time and resources wisely, including your own.

I understand that sometimes impulsiveness takes over about trying a new diet or buying a pair of shoes. Decisions about changing jobs or switching careers should be made very carefully. Job seekers need to be mindful about starting the interview process with a company or not. This is not just professional courtesy but also self-branding as a candidate. Experienced recruiters can help people contemplate whether they should look for new opportunities with good probing questions and solid professional advice.

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