Generations ago, employees would often form long term relationships with a single employer that would carry them through decades of their working lives, and sometimes these jobs covered the entire path from the entry level to retirement. But this doesn't happen much anymore. Employer-employee loyalty has become largely a thing of the past, and parties on both sides now embrace a philosophy of self-reliance (if you feel complimentary) and self-interest (if you don't). This usually works out better for both entities; Modern employers feel little hesitation when they need to cut positions in order to stay profitable, and modern employees are free to prioritize their own needs and career growth without fear of the old-fashion stigma associated with "job-hopping."
On average, professional employees now stick with the same employer for about 2.5 years before moving on. But if you're not wild about this modern tendency and you'd like to find a position that offers long term stability, that's okay. Keep these job search tips in mind.
1. Move slowly.
If you're looking for long term, sustainable relationship, slow and steady wins the race. Don't rush into any offer or madly pursue an open position without doing your homework. Careful research will help you determine if this company has a history of stability, a strong brand, a proven and tested business model, and a promising plan for the future.
2. Your happiness matters most.
You won't keep the job if you aren't happy there. No matter how determined you are, or how steady and committed you feel right now, only a fool keeps a miserable position for years and years at a time without looking around for something better. So if you hope to dig in and stay for the long haul, find a company culture that fits your personality. Find a place where you'll fit in and get along with your coworkers. And most important, aggressively interview your potential boss.
3. Negotiate your salary with the future in mind.
If you only intend to keep this job for a year or two, your actually compensation will reflect the agreement you sign when you accept the offer. But if you plan to stay here for ten years, make sure you start out on the right foot. Most companies offer a basic increase of three to four percent every year, plus an annual raise that will be negotiated after each yearly performance review. Take out a calculator and determine what your base salary will look like in three, five, ten, and fifteen years.
4. Be clear about your long term plans and stand behind them.
Don't spin or misrepresent your needs in order to impress your potential employer. If you want a job that will work for you and keep you content as the years go by, put your own needs first, second, and third. As you draft your resume and cover letter, be perfectly clear about what you're looking for and how you'd like to spend your days. Leave no room for ambiguity, and when the subject comes up in your interview, be straightforward with your potential employer about everything from your desired working hours to the kind of experience and training you'd like to gain from this role.
Start with an Effective Resume
In order to identify, pursue, and land the position you want—and only that position—you'll need to start by creating a powerful and effective resume. Visit MyPerfectResume for help and guidance.