Researching company limits wrong job choices

Make sure you know what a job entails before signing on.


Being a young professional is exciting. You have so many opportunities laid out before you and few obligations holding you back.

However, with so many possibilities there’s also the pressure of making a wrong move.

Often it takes a few tries to find the perfect job or to build the ideal career, but you certainly don’t want to seem like a job hopper because it makes you less employable. At the same time you can’t shut out new opportunities. I often hear about people making a leap to what they thought would be their dream job only to be disappointed by the reality.

A friend recently told me about her job shift. Although she likes the company she works for, the day-to-day duties of her role are different from what she expected.

“I was expecting a more advanced position, a slightly higher salary, a step up in the chain and what it turned into before my arrival here was a largely administrator role,” she says.

To learn more about the employer’s view, I contacted a headhunter and asked his opinion.

“Jumping from job to job is generally not advisable. However, in some circumstances it can make sense — contract work being one such instance — but be prepared to answer the coming questions as to why you did it,” says Hassan Deeb, senior recruiter at BizNets Professional Recruitment. “Those who jump from one position to another are considered high-risk candidates. Do the proper research on the position and company before you apply and absolutely before you accept the offer.”

However, in the friend’s case, the job she originally applied for wasn’t the one she ended up with. “It changed into a different role prior to my arriving here — a role they very much needed, but one that wasn’t what I had hoped to do,” she says. “Still, I made the right decision … I’m still learning and I like the company.”

Michelle Wales, director of Canadian operations at Aquent staffing firm, says that in a case like my friend’s, it’s better to stay and learn then move on.

“Why move if you are learning, have a career path, are contributing and rewarded for that? If parts of this equation are missing, try making internal changes first.

“Then consider a move. Job hopping is costly to employers, to teams, to customers and to you.”

As a recruiter, Deeb says spending less than two years with an employer is not advisable, but being miserable in your job isn’t the answer either.

“You will be doing no one any favours if you are working somewhere and you are not happy,” Deeb says. “You will be more productive in an atmosphere that is positive, in a job you enjoy. So explain your decision and make the move — long term you will have greater success in a position you enjoy.”

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