The trap of always looking for a better job

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  • iBrokeITiBrokeIT GXPN GPEN GWAPT GCIH GCFE GICSP GSEC eJPT Sec+ Member Posts: 1,266 ■■■■■■■■■□
    That company I was with for 6 years, I did give minor 3% raises here and there. But as you know, that is the very minimum and while I was at that company I completed CCNP R/S, CCDP, CCNP Security, was in the middle of working on CCIE DC at the time I requested my "Senior" title & salary correction. I was the only person who was certification oriented. 

    Sometimes you just have to see the reality of a companies status and growth. Which is another truth people have to see in an employer. Sometimes it is just not worth working for a struggling company or one that does not have a culture that encourages growth. That company just saw its engineers as worker bees. 

    Sometimes a job is "just a job" and needs to be treated as such.  Glad to hear you learned something valuable from it and bounced back.
  • dontstopdontstop Member Posts: 578 ■■■■□□□□□□
    edited August 2019
    The problem with asking for advice on this topic is that everyone's situation is different and job roles and demands differ based on country, location and industry.

    Is job hopping great advice for someone with a mortgage and kids to support, where a missed payment could result in defaulting on the loan? Is staying in the same multinational good for a young person's career? You find a great job where you grow and learn and get paid well. Do you just say leave because "gotta go lads, 24 months is up". 

    I've tried both and had varying success, I'd avoid following these type of "dating advice" style solutions. "Just change jobs every 12 months" might be fine if you're a contractor coming in to do a very specific job or in other certain circumstances. But in others it might hurt you, when the recruiter is asking why you seem to "hop" from job to job. Also in certain places, even if you're a 5 x CCIE you might not really get permission to cut lose on the network until you've had 6-12 months of proven experience and been shown the ropes (Banks/Financial/Hospital). So dropping out after 12 months might mean you leave still as a "rookie" with no real hands on. Other places may punish your history (even if you have experience) by saying, well you don't seem to have stayed at places for a long time so you must not have much experience and low ball you on salary, others might reward it. 

    Again, as always "It depends". For my personal situation 3-5 years is my sweet spot. That works for me and my lifestyle. 
  • DatabaseHeadDatabaseHead CSM, ITIL x3, Teradata Assc, MS SQL Server, Project +, Server +, A+, N+, MS Project, CAPM, RMP Member Posts: 2,489 ■■■■■■■■■□
    dontstop said:
    The problem with asking for advice on this topic is that everyone's situation is different and job roles and demands differ based on country, location and industry.

    Is job hopping great advice for someone with a mortgage and kids to support, where a missed payment could result in defaulting on the loan? Is staying in the same multinational good for a young person's career? You find a great job where you grow and learn and get paid well. Do you just say leave because "gotta go lads, 24 months is up". 

    I've tried both and had varying success, I'd avoid following these type of "dating advice" style solutions. "Just change jobs every 12 months" might be fine if you're a contractor coming in to do a very specific job or in other certain circumstances. But in others it might hurt you, when the recruiter is asking why you seem to "hop" from job to job. Also in certain places, even if you're a 5 x CCIE you might not really get permission to cut lose on the network until you've had 6-12 months of proven experience and been shown the ropes (Banks/Financial/Hospital). So dropping out after 12 months might mean you leave still as a "rookie" with no real hands on. Other places may punish your history (even if you have experience) by saying, well you don't seem to have stayed at places for a long time so you must not have much experience and low ball you on salary, others might reward it. 

    Again, as always "It depends". For my personal situation 3-5 years is my sweet spot. That works for me and my lifestyle. 

    I think most people in this thread sharing their experiences qualified their situations at least I understood their background....    Of course job hopping as a contractor is completely fine, that's the nature of contracting, while holding FTE roles comes at a bigger risk, but one that shouldn't be discouraged either.  I think we all get that, at least I hope we do.  

    I've left FTE roles where I was there for months for 40% increase....  (Albeit a rare situation)  All work is, is selling your life and the more money you make the more life you are buying back from the system if you so choose to.  (Why I live WELL below my means, which is a completely different topic so I'll stop).  

    IMO the spirit of the thread is don't conform to the system to just conform.  These ground rules are almost always set by the company and not by employees.  I agree there are certain parameters that if breached will give you more difficultly in finding certain roles.  However....   my vantage point is to always remember you have a certain amount of life and you are essentially selling it.....   Once sold it can't be recouped.  







  • UnixGuyUnixGuy SABSA, GCFA, GPEN, CISM, RHCE, Security+, Server+, eJPT, CCNA Mod Posts: 4,082 Mod
    There are a lot of good ideas in this thread. One thing that wasn't mentioned here is that a big downside of sticking out for 3-5 yrs working on Vmware (for example) and by the time you start thinking of moving, your skills might be irrelevant (for example, things become more cloud oriented).


    Another big issue I faced when I was trying to move up is that recruiters are on auto-pilot, they want to get you a job with exactly the same title that you have now. So if you are a Helpdesk professional, they will try to get you another Helpdesk role..if you want to do something different like Network engineer, it will be a lot harder (regardless of loyal you were..). Same thing with management roles...you are a Network engineering manager? good luck trying to get a cloud engineering management role (it happens but I found it a bit harder, you get the idea)



    Goal: MBA, Jan 2021
  • UnixGuyUnixGuy SABSA, GCFA, GPEN, CISM, RHCE, Security+, Server+, eJPT, CCNA Mod Posts: 4,082 Mod
    dontstop said:
    ..... Also in certain places, even if you're a 5 x CCIE you might not really get permission to cut lose on the network until you've had 6-12 months of proven experience and been shown the ropes (Banks/Financial/Hospital). So dropping out after 12 months might mean you leave still as a "rookie" with no real hands on..

    I'd be surprised if a 5 x CCIE isn't allowed to touch a bank/Finance/Hospital network. I see this rule more for junior staff with less than 5 yrs of general experience. The people who handle banks/finance/hospital networks usually have zero CCIEs. The level of expertise isn't as high once you're past that beginner (5 yrs + hands-on experience) threshold.
    Goal: MBA, Jan 2021
  • dontstopdontstop Member Posts: 578 ■■■■□□□□□□
    UnixGuy said:
    dontstop said:
    ..... Also in certain places, even if you're a 5 x CCIE you might not really get permission to cut lose on the network until you've had 6-12 months of proven experience and been shown the ropes (Banks/Financial/Hospital). So dropping out after 12 months might mean you leave still as a "rookie" with no real hands on..

    I'd be surprised if a 5 x CCIE isn't allowed to touch a bank/Finance/Hospital network. I see this rule more for junior staff with less than 5 yrs of general experience. The people who handle banks/finance/hospital networks usually have zero CCIEs. The level of expertise isn't as high once you're past that beginner (5 yrs + hands-on experience) threshold.
    It was more reductio ad absurdum to prove a point, depending on the place sometimes 12 months isn't even enough time to have performed meaningful work. I know some roles, extremely complex that you spend the first 3-6 months just getting up to speed with technology, process. Leaving at 1 year would make you seem still green. 
  • UnixGuyUnixGuy SABSA, GCFA, GPEN, CISM, RHCE, Security+, Server+, eJPT, CCNA Mod Posts: 4,082 Mod
    dontstop said:
    It was more reductio ad absurdum to prove a point, depending on the place sometimes 12 months isn't even enough time to have performed meaningful work. I know some roles, extremely complex that you spend the first 3-6 months just getting up to speed with technology, process. Leaving at 1 year would make you seem still green. 
    A lot of recruiters & hiring managers certainly share your sentiments. I've come across more than one who believe that. Whilst I think there is merit to this, my anecdotal experience has been slightly different.

    One of the complex environment that I've been in was bank with a global presence (so we had to support offices globally...massive networks, hundreds of firewalls, poorly engineered and difficult to trace...plenty of technologies). They were inefficient in onboarding new staff so it took 2-4 weeks to get access to most things, but I was oncall in my 5th week, troubleshooting problems and responding to incidents. Didn't have any issues. Neither did my colleagues (the security team was 300+ people, huge team).

    I've also been involved in "security transformation" programs that are 3 years long. I didn't have to be involved from the beginning to, for example, participate in the identity management architecture part of the program, I was delivering from week 2. (week 1 was compliance training and getting laptop ready..).

    The third anecdote that I'm offering is the increasing number of contract jobs. 3 months contracts, 6 months, 12 months, ..etc. If one can't offer value until 6 months, I'd be very concerned.

    Again, this is purely my anecdotal experience & observations. Some recruiters & hiring managers share your sentiments for sure. I share this sentiment for junior positions as well - say someone just starting in IT, sure I'd like to see 5 years of experience preferably in a challenging environment + some serious certs. But If I get a senior network architect (15~20 yrs of experience) with a track record, the conversation is different.


    I definitely need to be careful with hopping... I was planning of sticking it out more in this job...I'm gonna see the outcome of next week's conversation & I'll decide after :)
    Goal: MBA, Jan 2021
  • DatabaseHeadDatabaseHead CSM, ITIL x3, Teradata Assc, MS SQL Server, Project +, Server +, A+, N+, MS Project, CAPM, RMP Member Posts: 2,489 ■■■■■■■■■□
    edited August 2019
    My last role I just left was basically a 3 - 12 month contract, if budget presented itself maybe further extension.  The sole purpose of my role was to map out all integrations down to the table (column) and api (end points) layer.....   It was a massive undertaking which took me ~5 months to complete.  I walk out of there knowing the overall environment better than people who were there for years.  

    This document will save them millions when it comes to COTS / Vendor integrations.  

    Ultimately mission accomplished.  They wanted me to start work on another business centric diagram, essentially more enterprise level than integration (middleware).  I got a better offer in a better city with better weather.  GOHN.

    @UnixGuy keep us posted!  Sending you good vibes!  
  • E Double UE Double U Member Posts: 1,561 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I am always on the lookout for something better (passive job seeker), but I don't jump on every thing that appears only slightly better. I've always stayed with employers for several years, but not out of loyalty. When I have a good work-life balance and still enjoy my job then there is no reason to leave. I have been fortunate to work in organizations that were always changing so even though I stayed with that employer for years doesn't mean that I did the same thing for years. 
    Alphabet soup: CISSP, CCSP, CISM, CISA, GPEN, GCIA, GCIH, GCCC, CEH, etc

    2020 goals: AZ-900, AZ-500, SEC530

    "You tried your best and you failed miserably. The lesson is, never try." - Homer Simpson
  • DatabaseHeadDatabaseHead CSM, ITIL x3, Teradata Assc, MS SQL Server, Project +, Server +, A+, N+, MS Project, CAPM, RMP Member Posts: 2,489 ■■■■■■■■■□
    I am always on the lookout for something better (passive job seeker), but I don't jump on every thing that appears only slightly better. I've always stayed with employers for several years, but not out of loyalty. When I have a good work-life balance and still enjoy my job then there is no reason to leave. I have been fortunate to work in organizations that were always changing so even though I stayed with that employer for years doesn't mean that I did the same thing for years. 
    I think this is a little more rare for most people to be honest, but heck yeah if you can find an organization like this go for it.   I'm working off the assumption of "most" jobs which in that case from my opinion after 3 years unless you are moving up or out into new roles it's probably time to bounce.  I learn things really quick and get bored easily, so to combat that new efforts is one way, and I like cash.  It enables me to retire much faster assuming I invest well and control my expenses.  

    I recently picked golf back up so that helps a lot gives me something to focus on other than my career, and of course my family. 
  • JoJoCal19JoJoCal19 California Kid Mod Posts: 2,806 Mod
    edited August 2019

    I recently picked golf back up so that helps a lot gives me something to focus on other than my career
    Well you sure picked the right state to relocate to then  B)

    I dabble in it. We'll have to hit up the links together sometime.
    Have: CISSP, CISM, CISA, CRISC, eJPT, GCIA, GSEC, CCSP, CCSK, AWS CSAA, AWS CCP, CEHv8, CHFIv8, ITIL-F, MS Cyber Security - USF, BSBA - UF, MSISA - WGU
    Currently Working On: Python, OSCP Prep
    Next Up:​ OSCP
    Studying:​ Code Academy (Python), Bash Scripting, Virtual Hacking Lab Coursework
  • malachi1612malachi1612 Senior Member SwitzerlandMember Posts: 425 ■■■■□□□□□□
    edited August 2019
    Its money what pays the bills, not loyalty.

    That's the lesson I learned.

    I was in a IT role for 9 years until May when I left.  I got too comfortable there which lead to getting bored and was learning nothing new.

    I spent the last 2.5 years there self studying, getting certs.  Finally got a new job doing computer forensics in another country, moved away from the UK to Switzerland and here I am now learning new skills on the job.
    Certifications:
    MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure, MCSA: Windows Server 2016, ITIL Foundation, MCSA: Windows 10, MCP

  • coreyb80coreyb80 Member Posts: 640 ■■■■■□□□□□
    Sometimes too, you learn that grass isn't always greener on the other side.  I left a job a few months ago for a 32% pay increase, only to get here and realize I'm paid to be here "just in case anything breaks" as everything is hard lined on who does and has access to do what.  Now I'm looking for other opportunities and it's crazy having to explain why I'm looking for a new opportunity after 3 months even though I was at my last gigs 6 and 5 years respectively.  
    WGU BS - Network Operations and Security
    Estimated completion: November 2021
  • NetworkNewbNetworkNewb Member Posts: 3,288 ■■■■■■■■■□
    coreyb80 said:
    Sometimes too, you learn that grass isn't always greener on the other side.  I left a job a few months ago for a 32% pay increase, only to get here and realize I'm paid to be here "just in case anything breaks" as everything is hard lined on who does and has access to do what.  Now I'm looking for other opportunities and it's crazy having to explain why I'm looking for a new opportunity after 3 months even though I was at my last gigs 6 and 5 years respectively.  
    I'd have a hard time passing on a job that gave me a 32% increase just cause it was boring personally.   In IT Security boring is usually a good thing.    Since you are there "just incase anything breaks" you must have access to things you can learn and stay on top of too. 
  • JoJoCal19JoJoCal19 California Kid Mod Posts: 2,806 Mod
    coreyb80 said:
    Sometimes too, you learn that grass isn't always greener on the other side.  I left a job a few months ago for a 32% pay increase, only to get here and realize I'm paid to be here "just in case anything breaks" as everything is hard lined on who does and has access to do what.  Now I'm looking for other opportunities and it's crazy having to explain why I'm looking for a new opportunity after 3 months even though I was at my last gigs 6 and 5 years respectively.  
    I'd have a hard time passing on a job that gave me a 32% increase just cause it was boring personally.   In IT Security boring is usually a good thing.    Since you are there "just incase anything breaks" you must have access to things you can learn and stay on top of too. 
    Same here. That's plenty of time to pour into education and certs and then certainly after 1-2 years, look for something else.
    Have: CISSP, CISM, CISA, CRISC, eJPT, GCIA, GSEC, CCSP, CCSK, AWS CSAA, AWS CCP, CEHv8, CHFIv8, ITIL-F, MS Cyber Security - USF, BSBA - UF, MSISA - WGU
    Currently Working On: Python, OSCP Prep
    Next Up:​ OSCP
    Studying:​ Code Academy (Python), Bash Scripting, Virtual Hacking Lab Coursework
  • E Double UE Double U Member Posts: 1,561 ■■■■■■■■□□
    JoJoCal19 said:
    coreyb80 said:
    Sometimes too, you learn that grass isn't always greener on the other side.  I left a job a few months ago for a 32% pay increase, only to get here and realize I'm paid to be here "just in case anything breaks" as everything is hard lined on who does and has access to do what.  Now I'm looking for other opportunities and it's crazy having to explain why I'm looking for a new opportunity after 3 months even though I was at my last gigs 6 and 5 years respectively.  
    I'd have a hard time passing on a job that gave me a 32% increase just cause it was boring personally.   In IT Security boring is usually a good thing.    Since you are there "just incase anything breaks" you must have access to things you can learn and stay on top of too. 
    Same here. That's plenty of time to pour into education and certs and then certainly after 1-2 years, look for something else.
    Agreed! I used downtime at my previous employer to knock out CCNP Security, CISSP, and GCIH. 
    Alphabet soup: CISSP, CCSP, CISM, CISA, GPEN, GCIA, GCIH, GCCC, CEH, etc

    2020 goals: AZ-900, AZ-500, SEC530

    "You tried your best and you failed miserably. The lesson is, never try." - Homer Simpson
  • UnixGuyUnixGuy SABSA, GCFA, GPEN, CISM, RHCE, Security+, Server+, eJPT, CCNA Mod Posts: 4,082 Mod
    kudos to you who can use the downtime productively. I did that with mediocre success in the past. downtime and lack of challenge get the best of me
    Goal: MBA, Jan 2021
  • coreyb80coreyb80 Member Posts: 640 ■■■■■□□□□□
    JoJoCal19 said:
    coreyb80 said:
    Sometimes too, you learn that grass isn't always greener on the other side.  I left a job a few months ago for a 32% pay increase, only to get here and realize I'm paid to be here "just in case anything breaks" as everything is hard lined on who does and has access to do what.  Now I'm looking for other opportunities and it's crazy having to explain why I'm looking for a new opportunity after 3 months even though I was at my last gigs 6 and 5 years respectively.  
    I'd have a hard time passing on a job that gave me a 32% increase just cause it was boring personally.   In IT Security boring is usually a good thing.    Since you are there "just incase anything breaks" you must have access to things you can learn and stay on top of too. 
    Same here. That's plenty of time to pour into education and certs and then certainly after 1-2 years, look for something else.
    Im currently enrolled in WGU and scheduled to finish in June 2021.  Very valid point you bring up.  Think I’ll do just that. 
    WGU BS - Network Operations and Security
    Estimated completion: November 2021
  • coreyb80coreyb80 Member Posts: 640 ■■■■■□□□□□
    coreyb80 said:
    Sometimes too, you learn that grass isn't always greener on the other side.  I left a job a few months ago for a 32% pay increase, only to get here and realize I'm paid to be here "just in case anything breaks" as everything is hard lined on who does and has access to do what.  Now I'm looking for other opportunities and it's crazy having to explain why I'm looking for a new opportunity after 3 months even though I was at my last gigs 6 and 5 years respectively.  
    I'd have a hard time passing on a job that gave me a 32% increase just cause it was boring personally.   In IT Security boring is usually a good thing.    Since you are there "just incase anything breaks" you must have access to things you can learn and stay on top of too. 
    One of the network guys here was nice was enough to oblige me with my request for access to their Cisco Meraki Switches.  Only read access, but the fact he did it was cool with me.  
    WGU BS - Network Operations and Security
    Estimated completion: November 2021
  • UnixGuyUnixGuy SABSA, GCFA, GPEN, CISM, RHCE, Security+, Server+, eJPT, CCNA Mod Posts: 4,082 Mod
    I decided that I don't want to change jobs now. I've been firm and telling recruiters that I'm not looking to move

    This had some good benefits on my psych so far:
    - I started planning on how to get to the next level in my current company. already discussed potential promotion next year.

    - Feeling more relaxed and can focus on my MBA now, which will take the best of next year to finish anyway



    My next move will be to a director type role and most probably not in a technical discipline - I can do that here and move to a different team later down the line. So I'm going to enjoy my current role and grow here, I'm comfortable and I get a lot of autonomy here.


    it feels good!
    Goal: MBA, Jan 2021
  • jwdk19jwdk19 Member Member Posts: 66 ■■■□□□□□□□
    edited October 2019
    Unfortunately, changing employers is the only way I have seen significant pay increases. Most organizations that I've been with just seem not to encourage internal growth. Even when making a move internally, they seem not to want to compensate you as much as someone hired externally. Even if you have the same skillset/experience. Have seen that too often and have become "the someone hired externally". Lol
  • ChevelChevel Member Posts: 208 ■■■□□□□□□□
    This is me right now and I just started this job, but I have no interest in it at all. I'm also at a point where I want more money or better benefits.  Going from 65k to 75k back down to 55k with more responsibilities stinks.  
  • bigdogzbigdogz Member Posts: 798 ■■■■■■■□□□
    @UnixGuy
    IMO I would stay with the good job as the employer and direct supervisor is key to a positive workplace environment. 
    If I knew the new environment in regards to employer, tasks/duties, manager, and look at upper management currently working there to see their habits. They may come in, gut the place and make it a better company to buy.
  • beadsbeads Senior Member Member Posts: 1,459 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Once I master a subject I am ready to move on to the next interesting shiny on my horizon. Same with positions. I have no problem tackling some very, very difficult problem sets, mastering the position then moving on to the next bowl spaghetti and seeking out the next opportunity. I have absolutely no problem telling people I am mercenary about projects and don't pretend I am looking for a gold watch or anything of the sort.

    On the negative side, I also spend more time reading and learning leaving less time for leisure activities that I really don't miss in the first place outside of setting aside vacation time in the spring/summer/fall months. So this path satisfies both my intellectual curiosity as well as my financial goals aplomb.

    - b/eads 
  • Fulcrum45Fulcrum45 Member Posts: 604 ■■■■■□□□□□
    Well, I did it again. Just accepted a new job offer starting later this month but this time I can see a light at the end of the tunnel. It comes with a considerable pay-bump, let's me focus on networking and finally some room for growth. I'm hoping this will put an end to the 12-14 month roller coasters. 
  • bigdogzbigdogz Member Posts: 798 ■■■■■■■□□□
    @Fulcrum45
    congrats and good luck!
  • TechGromitTechGromit A+, N+, GSEC, GCIH, GREM, Ontario, NY Member Posts: 1,950 ■■■■■■■■□□
    UnixGuy said:

    you ended with  CV full of 12 months, 18 months jobs....

    I've written about this before, while jumping around early in your career could be a good thing, Employers are looking for stable employees that are going to stay awhile, I think you'll find it's going to hurt your job perspectives when looking for work in a tight job market. After all why would I hire you to be my network engineer or Senior Incident Response investigator when I can see on your resume your going to be jumping ship in 6 months. It takes a good 3 to 6 months to get proficient in a position to be at your maximum productivity level, depending on how complicated the position is.    
    Still searching for the corner in a round room.
  • TechGromitTechGromit A+, N+, GSEC, GCIH, GREM, Ontario, NY Member Posts: 1,950 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Another note....  (Sorry just hit me).  I have kids, 16, 11 and 3 and I want them to experience different locations and enjoy life.  So...  It's not just about me.  Sorry for the long rant lol


    I wonder if they see it that way too. While younger children easily form new friends ships, older children may not appreciate being uprooted every few years, having to start over in social circles. Some may excel in new environments, most don't.  

    https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/thinking-about-kids/201007/moving-is-tough-kids

    Still searching for the corner in a round room.
  • LordQarlynLordQarlyn Member Posts: 611 ■■■■■□□□□□
    coreyb80 said:
    Sometimes too, you learn that grass isn't always greener on the other side.  I left a job a few months ago for a 32% pay increase, only to get here and realize I'm paid to be here "just in case anything breaks" as everything is hard lined on who does and has access to do what.  Now I'm looking for other opportunities and it's crazy having to explain why I'm looking for a new opportunity after 3 months even though I was at my last gigs 6 and 5 years respectively.  
    That's true, but sometimes I'm not looking for greener grass. Sometimes I just need different grass, sometimes the grass is too green where I am at.
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