There’s a difference between dreading Monday morning and genuinely disliking a job. The former usually clears up by lunchtime, but the latter can be all-consuming.
Dread going to work lately? Feeling run down? Can’t help but think your job is going nowhere? These are all signs that you may be ready to move on to a new stage of your career.
If you’re still not sure, below we review 10 signs you might be ready for a career change, and if you feel that even a few of them resonate with you, it may be time to start thinking about what you want to do next.
#1. You have zero motivation
Are you frequently late? If so, do you care about the repercussions? Do you find yourself becoming bored or disinterested as soon as you sit down at your desk? Are you constantly watching the clock?
If this sounds like you, it might be time to consider moving on to a more exciting venture. Work should be challenging but it should also be fulfilling, so stop wishing the hours of your day away and make a change!
While having zero motivation can be connected to other things in your life, consider how you’ll feel if you remove yourself from your current working role and whether it will enhance your quality of life.
#2. You're always ill
Stress takes its toll on the body and if you’re constantly run down it could be your body’s way of telling you that you need to slow down and re-evaluate.
This kind of fatigue can include insomnia, your skin breaking out, changes in your weight and feelings of anxiety or panic. If you think your job is hurting your health, this is a big reason to either speak to your line manager about how to make things more manageable or consider applying for new roles.
Either way, you’ll thank yourself in the long run.
#3. You're already looking elsewhere
Are you constantly searching on recruitment sites? Have you got your CV bang up to date and a draft resignation letter written? We all have a look at what else is out there from time to time, but if you’re actively searching for other jobs and opportunities then you’ve probably already mentally checked out of work.
If you’re already thinking about your next move, then you’re unlikely to be focused on doing a good job at work, which ultimately has a negative impact on both you and your employer.
To this end, try to avoid lingering and really focus on the search for something better, but in the meantime, put your best foot forward as you close out your time in your current job (and hopefully bag a great reference along the way).
#4. You spend too much time at work
Are you always the first in and the last to leave? Are you missing out on spending quality time with your friends and family? It’s great to be committed to your job but if you feel like it's consuming your whole life, it’s probably for the best that you either take a step back or walk out the door.
Having a healthy work-life balance is so important for your mental and physical health, and there’s nothing worse than working for an organisation that doesn’t allow for this type of flexible work. Make sure the next stage of your career allows you to work to live, not live to work.
#5. You're being underpaid
If you’ve researched the average market salaries for your role in your location and it’s more than what you’re on, then you should speak to your employer about getting a raise. If they deny you a salary increase and it’s clear there’s no room to budge in the near future, you might want to think about looking elsewhere for a wage that reflects the norm.
Staying in a job that’s not paying you what you’re worth can make it harder to close the gap later on - especially with the rise in cost of living - meaning you could end up earning far less than your peers later in your career.
Whilst money isn’t everything, you’ll feel more valued if you’re appropriately compensated and it can take away other causes of stress like worrying about making ends meet each month. A higher salary in a new role may even give you room for the extra savings you need to book a well-deserved holiday.
#6. You don't feel valued
As an adult, you shouldn’t expect a constant stream of praise from your boss, but it is nice to be thanked for good work and feel like your contribution is valued. If you feel taken for granted, however, you may want to find a role in an organisation that has a better working culture.
Employers that value their staff reward them with more than just their pay; they invest in their skills and development.
If you don’t think your employer is willing to help you develop as a professional, then it’s probably not worth carrying on working for them. You’ll never be able to progress in your career if you’re not given the chance to grow your potential, so if you have career goals that are based on this type of development, it’s best to move on to a role that will get you off ground level and on the way up the career ladder.
This brings us to our next point…
#7. There's no promotion in sight
If you feel you’ve mastered your job and are looking for more exciting challenges, it may be an indication that you’re ready for a promotion.
If, however, your boss continuously passes you over for promotion or there’s a lack of available opportunities for you then you should consider looking elsewhere.
You don’t want to feel stuck in a job that’s going nowhere, so leaving can be your best option if you not only want to grow but flourish.
#8. Your role has changed for the worse
If changes to your responsibilities at work have happened subtly and over a long period of time, you might look around one day and realise that your role has completely changed since you started. This isn’t always a bad thing as it may have allowed you to discover your hidden talents.
However, if you feel you’ve been pushed into taking on tasks that you don’t enjoy or are not in line with your long-term career goals then it's perfectly reasonable to consider taking on a new opportunity.
Take some time to consider what you want to be doing and make a plan for your next steps.
#9. The work environment is toxic
Do you enjoy the environment you work in? If it’s filled with hostility and poor communication, then probably not.
Negative energy and a lack of clear processes and communication between departments and team members can really demotivate employees, making it hard to feel good about being at work.
This can be reason enough to leave, but if a toxic work environment starts to leak into your personal life, then you know it’s time to make a change.
#10. Staff turnover is high
High staff turnover is usually a sign that something’s not quite right with a company. There are many different reasons that people leave, but if you’ve noticed that talented employees are frequently heading for the door you might want to consider why.
If it feels like every other week there’s another person announcing their leaving then it’s definitely time to look more critically at the company and be prepared that you might need to look at leaving too.
Take some time to think about what you really want. Ask yourself if it’s just the company or if it’s the industry as a whole that you’re turned off by. Would you feel any differently if you were doing the same job at another organisation?
If you discover that you’re no longer feeling the love for the industry in general, it might be time to change your field completely. Changing careers can feel like a mammoth task and it's a big step to take, but it will be worth it in the long run to have a career that you’re invested in rather than a job that simply pays the bills.
Online professional qualifications are an effective and flexible way to make the transition into a new industry. They teach you the practical skills and knowledge you’ll need to break into a new sector whilst still giving you plenty of time to keep working to support yourself.
Committing to studying a professional qualification shows future employers that you’re passionate about your new field and are willing to invest your time and money in learning new skills. Plus, in some industries like HR, they can often be more highly valued than university degrees.
The thing to remember is not to let fear of the unknown hold you back from moving on, especially when the alternative is staying in a job that’s going nowhere, makes you miserable and is harming your health!
Thinking about a new career? We have online courses in Project Management, HR, L&D, Accountancy, Marketing, Management and Procurement. Contact our Course Advisors today for more information.