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Should I take this job at another firm?
Old 08-04-2014, 08:34 PM   #1
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Should I take this job at another firm?

I live in a top major metro, and am 3 years out of undergrad and in the work force. My first job lasted for a year, and I was laid off/given severance due to massive downsizing. I am on job #2, and it is "going well" in the sense that I was just promoted. Pay wise after my promotion, my salary only increased 9% and my bonus potential 5%. I was a bit disappointed in the pay bump.

The timing has all been weird on this, but a family friend works at a smaller firm in a similar line of business that has only been around since 2009 and is growing quickly. I was offered a job after a few interviews at the firm in a more dynamic role that would involve 20% travel, more face time with vendors and internal employees, and less monotony/structure than my current role (largely an accounting role) at a more established firm with a more clear and structured career trajectory.

The pay at the job I was offered is still ~16% higher salary wise than my current role (even after my promotion). The role is very undefined, and they want someone who can step in and define things more and grow organically within the firm.

I am 25 and if I take this job, it will be my 3rd job in 3 years. Of course, I would not go into it with the intention that I'll be looking again in a year or two, but if I do need to for whatever reason, I feel as if I will be much less marketable because I'll be viewed as a "job hopper". Further, I am struggling to find the motivation to leave (I've never been "recruited away" from a company) because starting a new job (esp at a new firm) is draining and a lot of work!

Starting at this new firm would be a risk that could pay off way faster than the more established firm I'm at now.

What do you think I should do? I am leaning towards taking the role at the other company largely for three reasons (not in any particular order of importance):

1) more money
2) more dynamic/less boring and structured of a role
3) more career growth potential
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Old 08-04-2014, 08:57 PM   #2
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I am several decades older, but feel you should look at all benefits and compensation. Also dig a little deeper on the travel thing. Every aspect of these jobs can be quantified, or ranked.

I found that when I went deeper in my inspection of other jobs, what megacorp offered me couldn't be matched by smaller companies, so I stuck it out for 7-8 years (then a layoff).

With my job, travel was once or twice a year, and usually enjoyable. I would have grown tired if travel was once a month. You may enjoy the travel, but consider how much of your free time you will give up.

Even though you want less structure, are you sure that is the environment you'll thrive in?
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Old 08-04-2014, 09:25 PM   #3
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I think when you interview and you can reasonably explain why you left each job, you will not be judged unfavorably. You seem to know what you want in terms of what you consider a more fulfilling job, so I would take that into consideration.

I would look at everything in totality. I travel about every 6 weeks, for about a week, and it's just the right amount of time away. My kids are closer to your age now, but it was tough on my DW in the early years, but it helped my career and income tremendously.


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Old 08-04-2014, 11:10 PM   #4
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I'm guessing you have very little responsibility (spouse, children) at this time in your life. I say go for it. YOLO!

In 20 years, the "I tried it but it didn't work out" story will be much more appealing than the, "I had the chance to try something really exciting but I was too conservative so here I still sit today" story.
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Old 08-05-2014, 08:17 AM   #5
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I'd go for it, as long you percieve the responsibilities as ok. Mainly I'm referring to travel, some folks love it others despise it. For me it was an age/life priority issue. At 30 something what a great experience. I got to travel the world, learned so much. Later in life, given added home responsibilities, enjoyable travel days/weeks/months were over.

Your first job doesn't count as a negative. The company downsized. So this would only be your second. A 16% bump on top of your promotion, sounds like a great opportunity
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Old 08-05-2014, 08:54 AM   #6
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A recruiter could look at the rťsumť before the interview stage and say "too job hoppy." However, you can selectively omit your first job or two (if they are irrelevant to your career track) if you so choose. As for your job choice, don't make a decision on what your rťsumť may or may not look like. That would be silly.
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Old 08-05-2014, 09:01 AM   #7
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Go for it. The opportunity sounds great and will provide very valuable job experience you likely won't get if you stay where you are. If it doesn't work out, then the story you tell during interviews is that it was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that you couldn't decline at this stage in your life. That said, you can conclude your story by stating that you've gotten your wanderlust out of your system (even if that's not quite true).

So-called "job hopping" is completely acceptable if each hop leads to a promotion and pay raise.
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Old 08-05-2014, 09:10 AM   #8
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Absolutely do it. In your first job you were laid off. Hardly your fault, I assume, so most employers will throw that one out. As someone who hired hundreds of people over a thirty year period I certainly wouldn't look as you as a "job hopper".

You do this while you are young and have few responsibilities. If it is a mistake you have plenty of time to recover.
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Old 08-05-2014, 09:11 AM   #9
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In 20 years, the "I tried it but it didn't work out" story will be much more appealing than the, "I had the chance to try something really exciting but I was too conservative so here I still sit today" story.
+1

I would definitely take the new job.
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Old 08-05-2014, 11:14 AM   #10
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I'd do it, especially so early in your career. You have plenty of time to recover if they did go bust.

My first jobs out of college were with large megacorp "dinosaurs" and in hindsight, not good fits for me, but it took me a few tries to figure that out.

If I'd known then what I know now, and in a similar situation to yours, I'd jump on it. My first transition from megacorps to a smaller company, was to a startup in Silicon Valley. Although it (and the subsequent one I worked at) went bust, I worked with some really bright intelligent people, things moved quickly, and I learned a lot. The signon bonus and salary was also far above what I was making at megacorp.

Word of caution...if you do think you'd be interested in something else, don't get too trapped in the "security blanket" of working somewhere, and then years go by and you're left wondering "what if?"

My .02
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Old 08-05-2014, 12:04 PM   #11
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Thanks for the responses everybody. I donít think itís fully ďhit meĒ yet. I probably will take it, and I donít know why Iím not more enthused about it (maybe I shouldnít take it if Iím not??). I know itís a good opportunity, and I knew they were very interested in me and would make me an offer. My first job out of college was so horrible that coming to my current firm was a breath of fresh air that Iíve grown very accustomed to and comfortable with. So I think Iím afraid to leave that stability and comfort that I know exists at my current firm, yet am also aware that my income growth will be very predictable, steady, and certainly not rapid at my current firm. So, if I want to make more money quicker, and gain more exposure to other parts of the business that I would at a smaller firm, I need to take this risk. Also, my job is so ho-hum right now that I would like some more excitement. Itís also a motivation thing Ė I need to find the energy and enthusiasm to switch firms and all that comes with that. Also, joining a firm of less than 50 people makes you very visible and transparent so I will need to be on my ďAĒ game to really excel. Not that I donít put forth an effort now, but at a larger company I find you can seep through the cracks easier (sometimes) than you could at a smaller firm. Iím planning on having two weeks off in between to do some travel, relax, and recharge.
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Old 08-05-2014, 12:22 PM   #12
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Take it.
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Old 08-05-2014, 12:55 PM   #13
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Thanks for the responses everybody. I donít think itís fully ďhit meĒ yet. I probably will take it, and I donít know why Iím not more enthused about it (maybe I shouldnít take it if Iím not??). I know itís a good opportunity, and I knew they were very interested in me and would make me an offer. My first job out of college was so horrible that coming to my current firm was a breath of fresh air that Iíve grown very accustomed to and comfortable with. So I think Iím afraid to leave that stability and comfort that I know exists at my current firm, yet am also aware that my income growth will be very predictable, steady, and certainly not rapid at my current firm. So, if I want to make more money quicker, and gain more exposure to other parts of the business that I would at a smaller firm, I need to take this risk. Also, my job is so ho-hum right now that I would like some more excitement. Itís also a motivation thing Ė I need to find the energy and enthusiasm to switch firms and all that comes with that. Also, joining a firm of less than 50 people makes you very visible and transparent so I will need to be on my ďAĒ game to really excel. Not that I donít put forth an effort now, but at a larger company I find you can seep through the cracks easier (sometimes) than you could at a smaller firm. Iím planning on having two weeks off in between to do some travel, relax, and recharge.
You are too young and unencumbered to be 'accustomed to and comfortable with.' Get out there!
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Old 08-05-2014, 02:15 PM   #14
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You are too young and unencumbered to be 'accustomed to and comfortable with.' Get out there!
Yes. Better to risk being perceived by future employers as a job hopper (not likely in this case anyway) than someone afraid to step outside the comfort zone.

Good friend's son had three jobs his first year out of college, bored at the first two, parents pulling out their hair when he quit them. His third is for a big Internet startup where he is a top salesman and loves every minute of it.
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Old 08-05-2014, 02:43 PM   #15
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Sounds like an interesting opportunity. I definitely wouldn't worry about the "job hopping" part. Many folks right out of school take a few stabs at trying different fits. I think it's pretty normal.

The only thing I'd suggest is to make sure you're looking at total compensation when you compare the financial aspect. In addition to salary/bonus, take into consideration health insurance, retirement benefits (pension, 401k, etc.) and any other benefits offered by both. They make a difference in the long run!

When you look at career stimulation, development and opportunities (short term/long term), total compensation and life style (travel, work hours, etc.), hopefully the right decision for you will make itself known.

Good luck!
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Old 08-05-2014, 03:07 PM   #16
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Word of caution...if you do think you'd be interested in something else, don't get too trapped in the "security blanket" of working somewhere, and then years go by and you're left wondering "what if?"
+1.

Although I had what by all apparent accounts was a great 31+ year career at 2 Megacorps (my unit was essentially sold off about 18 years in), I still occasionally wonder "what if" I had seriously looked for a different opportunity. Although I was generally a top performer and highly respected by management, peers, and team members, I was never seriously recruited by a headhunter (or anyone else for that matter). Somehow I got it into my head that the best way to make a move was to be headhunted, so I never seriously tried. I now think I would have been happier at a smaller firm, especially the last 10 years or so.

YMMV
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Old 08-05-2014, 03:18 PM   #17
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You are young. Now is the time to grow.

Go for it!
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Old 08-05-2014, 03:45 PM   #18
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Sounds like the OP has decided to take it. However, the OP's question begs another one. Would you encourage your DS or DD to take a job with a start up or other risky venture right out of college? Would you be willing to provide "economic outpatient care" if DS or DD chose to pursue the start up path?
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Old 08-05-2014, 03:55 PM   #19
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Quick story for you to consider.
I worked for the same company for 25 years, from virtually the day it opened it's doors and right up to the day it was sold to a competitor. A large percentage of the growth was my direct doing and I directly managed a healthy percentage of our large client relationships.
When rumors started flying about a sale, I asked the owner about exit strategy. he told me no worries, he'd make sure I was taken care of. When I pressed he promised it in writing.
Before it was put in writing he sold, gave me and the rest of management a hearty F**K you, and waltzed away with his fortune while we were left applying for jobs with the new owners.

Along the way I had passed up several opportunities out of loyalty to the owner who had given me a chance.

The moral of the story is, you do what is best for you, and always, but always get it in writing.
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Old 08-05-2014, 05:17 PM   #20
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My first job out of college was so horrible that coming to my current firm was a breath of fresh air that Iíve grown very accustomed to and comfortable with. So I think Iím afraid to leave that stability and comfort that I know exists at my current firm, yet am also aware that my income growth will be very predictable, steady, and certainly not rapid at my current firm. could at a smaller firm. Iím planning on having two weeks off in between to do some travel, relax, and recharge.

I think a relevent experience, please bear with me. When I was 25(in '83) working in a sawmill, we produced a lot of walnut gunstock blanks. The management changed, the place went to h*ll. Actual threats of physical abuse in the workplace. I needed a change and started in night school to get into an IT career.

A year later I graduated, got an offer in IT for more than I was making. I sat up wondering if I should take this new opportunity? I had driven myself 18 hours a day to achieve this goal! Then a feeling of comfort about the old h*ll, how familiar. There was security there. In my twisted mind I wondered about the future of IT. What happened when the last program had been written?:what: After all there would always be a need for a real walnut gunstock! If you walk in any gun store today 90% of the stocks are plastic. The mill shut down a couple of years later.

My long winded point; normal thoughts, familiarity with a lesser but comfortable position can cloud your judgment.

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