When you have been working for a while and have not seen a raise or any possibility of a promotion, you might start to worry. If the job has no growth opportunities, then you probably should think about what your next move would be in terms of how long you want to stay in that job. To make the right decisions, you may need to analyze your current situation.
First, you should figure out if there are any quick viable paths to get a raise and/or promotion at your current job. Then if you are set on leaving, you should put together a strategic plan for your departure that meets your career objectives.
It is usually a good idea to have a strategy when it comes to managing your career. In the next few sections, this post will provide you with some helpful suggestions on how to decide how long to stay at your job.
How Long Should You Stay at a Job Without a Promotion
For many people, it can be frustrating going to work and not having a path for a promotion. You might start asking yourself how you got in this spot, what steps you need to take and how long it will take to get out of your current position.
If you take a step back, think about the following:
Why are You Not Getting a Promotion in Your Current Job
Be honest with yourself and determine if you have done all the things you need to do to get yourself a promotion. How is your current job performance? Do you have an open line of communication with your boss or management team?
Take a look at your assignments and/or duties on the job. If you have been getting to work on time, going the extra mile, and taking care of the work assigned to you, then maybe you are not getting recognized.
You will need to determine the time and effort it will take for you to get on some higher visibility assignments (if you actually get that opportunity) where other company leaders outside of your boss may be able to recognize your work. Then perhaps give yourself a short term deadline, like a few months, to see if you can get into another position within your current company.
If you are seriously in a dead-end job with a non-growing company and no matter what you do results in more work and no increase in pay, it should make your decision to move on quickly very easy.
Comfort vs New Challenges
Depending on where you are in your life, you should factor that into the equation for the length of time you need to start planning for a new position. If you are in the middle of a stressful time in your personal life and your job is pretty easy, maybe it’s better to wait a little longer before leaving that job.
There could also be other components in your personal life, like wanting to spend more time with your family. For example, if a new baby is coming and you are eligible to take the time off, then you need to factor that into your job exit strategy timeline.
If you are bored out of your mind or your job is adding a lot of stress on top of the low pay, then you might be ready for a new adventure. To do that, get yourself active and start the job hunt as fast as you can.
Career Change May Be Needed
Not all jobs pay alike. Sometimes you may be at a job that might not have growth potential.
Do some research on the different salaries in your respective career. Check out sites like Glassdoor to see what opportunities you might have at your company or other similar companies. If you need a quick guide on what Glassdoor is, check out this article!
Ultimately, when changing careers, you are probably going to need to pick up additional skill-sets. If your current company offers you that opportunity quicker than anywhere else, you may want to stay on longer to take advantage of that.
What do you do when you are not progressing at work?
If your employer has other positions that you are interested in, but you can’t seem to get any traction to get yourself closer to the job you want, it might be that you’re not progressing quickly enough at your work.
This could be a result of several factors. One is that you’re not improving your skills. Are there specific skills that are preventing you from being successful? Or maybe you don’t have the right mentors to help you grow in your organization.
When it comes to necessary skills for a job, sometimes you need to go back to the basics and find out what the management team is looking for. For example, if you are in a project management role, one key skill is to be organized. That means you may have to write meeting minutes, manage multiple documents, and ensure that you provide timely status reports.
So, if you are super unorganized, can’t get to meetings on time, and are not aware of your project timelines, it means you probably need to improve your organization skills. Maybe you need to go to a training course or have the right tools. Regardless, you probably need to improve this skill to help progress your career at your company.
Again, as mentioned previously, if you have the opportunity to pick up a new skill at your job, even if you are not growing in your current position, it may be worth it to stay a little longer.
How long do you stay in a job you dislike?
If you are truly unhappy with your job and have no growth, then you may not want to hang around for much longer. The decision making of quitting a job might be the hardest part of it. If you need some help deciding, check out this post.
In terms of the length of time, it would be a good idea to review your current household and financial situation. This would help you make decisions based on understanding the risks of leaving and your career objectives.
One scenario would be to keep your job until you find the right one that matches what you want to do. For example, if you really wanted to work for a larger company that has remote work, then during your job search process you should look for those types of opportunities.
With so many different types of jobs and companies, sometimes you just need to look at the big picture of where you want to go in your career. It’s best to be strategic in your decision making process in terms of how long to stay at your job and determine the path that will help you accelerate your growth.
There is no formal answer on how long to stay at your job, but hopefully, this post has given you more things to think about when making the decision!