You’re excited. Your adrenaline is up and you’re tempted. But you like your current boss and most of your coworkers, and are making a contribution. You’re comfortable the way things are.
You know some of the risks of change: The new boss could be a micromanager. The work might be different than described. You might not learn (or like) the new tasks. You might not fit in.
You don’t have to take the job — you can keep looking. (I hear a groan).
How to decide? Consult your head — and your heart. Here’s a decision-making technique that has helped many of my clients:
- First, on a pad or computer, make3 vertical columns labeled, left to right: Key Factors; Present Job; and New Job.
- Then list all the factors or features important to you down the left side. Try for at least 10 — more is fine. Perhaps they will be values like:
- Uses my creativity
- Opportunity for growth
- Can make a contribution
- Reasonable commute
- Good for significant other
- Can make $___,000 in 3 years
- Flexibility for childcare
- Uses my X skill a lot
- Uses my Y skill a lot
- Uses little of my Z skill
- Can teach me new skills I want to have
- Organization gets good reviews on Glass Door
- Now fill in columns two and three, rating your present job and current job on a 1-5 scale. Take your time and talk about these ratings with someone who cares about you. If you can, revisit and add factors to the list for a day or two, as you think of new factors.
- Last step: total up the figures for your present job and your new job. Ask yourself: “Am I surprised?” “Did I want it to come out this way?” “Did I forget a few important factors that would change the totals?”
Look again at the totals. And then consult your heart. If the new job offer came out with the highest total, how does your heart (or your gut) feel about that?
If you can, talk about the numbers and what your heart says with other people who care about you. Think about which decision will make you unhappy or regretful if you decide that way.
Some people are best going with their head, some with their heart. Usually a combination works best. Think about important decisions you made in the past, which way you made them, and how they worked out. Whichever way you decide, you’ll have been smart about using this tool to make your decision.