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Why do people really change jobs?

I interview all ages of candidates and it surprises me how mature and highly accomplished or younger, overtly energised individuals can lose their confidence in the workplace if they end up in a work environment that's at odds with their natural work style or ideal stimulus. It's only a matter of time before the discord will show itself in either quality of work or motivation. That's why it's crucial to find the right fit – on an organisational and personal level.

When people have worked in a role for several years this brings with it a level of comfort and knowledge, an invisible protective ring around them of skills and expertise they become known for. Yet even these accomplished individuals are not always happy in their work. So, what is it that makes people consider a new role? Obviously, salary packages and promotion prospects always play a part and recently the chance to have a more flexible work pattern has been a major motivator, but in my experience, the top 3 underlying reasons people look to change jobs are these:

1. Not feeling appreciated – 40+ hours a week is longer than we spend with our families; in the workplace it's human nature to want to be around people you actually like, and enjoy working with, but when the long hours working culture dominates your horizons, that's a red flag you should take note of and consider a move.

2. Boredom - pigeon holed into a set of skills that gets the job done with no consideration of other possibilities often frustrates those requiring a deeper sense of accomplishment and job satisfaction. This can happen at any seniority level, and despite exploration into other prospects, some employers remain closed to future possibilities due to uneasiness with change – often a deep-seated or traditionally cultural factor in a workplace.

3. Stagnation - when the boss doesn't ask the right questions or if they do, how closely do they listen to the answers around employee satisfaction? People can feel ignored and unheard when their leader is ambiguous; it's about caring, as an individual - what matters to you? and in the wider context of the team dynamic - the impact an individual's happiness and job satisfaction can collectively yield.

Sally Wright
Longman Tax Recruitment