Decision dilemma: Shall I hand in my notice?

PUBLISHED: 10:39 09 July 2014

Decision advisor Roni Jay

Decision advisor Roni Jay


Are you weighing up whether to stick with the job or make a career move? Decision advisor Roni Jay helps you choose.

When you’re settled in a job, the thought of moving can seem daunting, if not downright scary. You know the people, you know the routines, you know you can do the work. It’s safe. On the other hand, it can be a bit boring, and less challenging than it felt when you started.

If you’re truly miserable, it’s probably not hard to decide to move on. But how do you know when is the right time to move from a job that is comfortable but no longer exciting? Or a job that you enjoy but doesn’t have the career prospects you’re after?

The first thing to do is to establish why you would want to hand in your notice. Do you want a shorter commute, more money, more convenient hours, better career prospects, more of a challenge, a corporate culture that suits you better? If you want to weigh up the alternatives to your present job, you need to know exactly what it is you want to change in order to be sure of finding a new job that is actually better, and not just more of the same.

Do some research into the kind of jobs that are around in your field, and see how they compare in the ways you have decided matter to you. There’s no point handing in your notice because the pay is too low, only to find that nowhere else is paying any more for the work you’d be doing.

Once you have established whether there are jobs you could apply for that would give you what you want, the question then is do you want a new job enough to go through the upheaval of a change. Will you be happy once you change, or will you regret it? This is usually at the crux of what makes the decision so tricky.

So here are ten questions to help you resolve that crucial dilemma. Ask yourself the following, and think hard about the answers, maybe mulling them over for a while:

1 What would I miss most about my current job?

2 What would I be most happy to leave behind?

3 What is the worst that could happen if I move?

4 What is the best that could happen?

5 What is the worst that could happen if I stay?

6 What is the best if I stay?

7 Is there anything in my present job that could plausibly happen that would make me want to stay (promotion / management restructuring / new premises etc)?

8 What would I like to be doing in two years from now in my career? What is the best route there?

9 How would I feel if I moved and the new job didn’t work out?

10 Is it the thought of a new job that is putting me off handing in my notice, or is it the process of getting there?

This is such a personal decision that only you know what is right for you. What looks right on paper may bear very little relation to how you feel, and yet what you really want out of any job is emotional: you want it to make you feel happy, stimulated and valued. So make the decision subjective as well as objective. Once you have allowed for the black-and-white stuff like salary and commuting distance, you can afford to make the final decision with your heart, not your head.

Roni Jay is a Devon-based decision consultant

Related articles

Latest from the Devon Life