Why Switching Jobs a Lot Might be a Good Idea


Have you settled down into a career yet or have you got into the habit of switching from one job to another?

If you have been moving between different jobs then maybe you are starting to feel quite bad about this. After all, you have probably had some people tell you that it’s time to settle down and stick to one job. So, is jumping from one job to another a good thing or a bad thing? There are some reasons for thinking that it could be a good thing.

The Salary Issue

One of the reasons why some people keep moving from one job to another is to earn more money. If you switch jobs a lot and get more money each time then before long you should be on a much better salary than the one you started with. Of course, if you don’t manage to get a better salary with every move then you could find that your earning power stagnates or even starts going backwards. This can happen when you feel that you need to take any sort of job just to get away from your current one, or if you plan to take a step back in order to get a better career but it doesn’t work out. If you are just starting your career then perhaps you will consider that there is still time later on to increase your salary and that now isn’t the time to worry too much about the money you make. On the other hand, if you need to earn as much as possible then maybe you will opt for a more pragmatic approach and decide to switch jobs or not based on the financial rewards.

Learning New Skills

One positive aspect to changing jobs that no one ever seems to mention is that you learn a huge amount of new skills in this way. In my early career I moved from a junior position in a government office to one with an insurance company and then a bank followed by another insurance company, all in the space a 3 or 4 years. I learned different things in each of these jobs and the knowledge I gained has come in really useful in the years since then when it has come to looking for new jobs. Even if you work in a few different jobs that aren’t right for you, there is still the chance to learn new skills and find out about areas of life you might never have come across. Even today I’m fairly confident that I could open a bank account for someone or work out an insurance premium if I really wanted to. Sure, I never have to do these things these days but I can write about them with confidence if I need to.

Finding the Job You Really Want  

Perhaps the strongest reason I can think of for changing jobs on a regular basis is to give yourself a better chance of finding the perfect position for you. If you stick to the one job during your whole career then how will you know whether or not there was a better option out there waiting for you? I eventually found a job I really like doing but it took me a good number of job changes to do so. If you aren’t currently satisfied with your career then the only sensible way of improving things is to look for something different. There’s no guarantee that you’ll find it at the next attempt but you should do so eventually. There are many different careers out there and trying as many of them as you can will let you understand which ones you like and which ones you don’t.

Do you plan on changing job a lot in the future?

7 Responses to Why Switching Jobs a Lot Might be a Good Idea

  1. The problem with changing jobs often is that you never become the “expert.” I’ve worked for one company since I graduated from college – going on 18 years now being in my current position for 14 years. It takes time and experience to truly become the expert such that you become a resource that the company has the confidence to rely on your skills and opinions to guide the business – which is my ultimate goal, to become a leader within the company I’ve dedicated my life to, helping to guide and shape their future direction.

    • Robert Bell says:

      That’s a good point Brock. Becoming an expert is more of an issue for some people than for others and I have to confess that it has nevere really entered into my thinking when deciding whether or not to switch jobs

  2. kammi says:

    I think it depends on the field and your eventual goals. I think that once you learn the fundamentals, feel free to see what’s out there and switch jobs. It actually (typically) will increase your value, especially if the field is in demand and you’re known to have a certain niche; the clients will typically follow you, also. But this is assuming, of course, that you were growing and not stagnating for the time you spent initially (which is a big deal; I’ve seen people who spent 15 years at a company and they’re incredibly dull /their knowledge is incredibly dated and they’ve done NOTHING and are unemployable if they get laid off, etc). I would do something like spend ten years cutting your teeth, and then (you’ll know if you’re very very good at what you do) you can start hopping from one to another as a consultant or specialist as need be. It depends on the field, how interrelated they are; but this is not the time of our parents’ field any longer, where you could spend 35 years at a company, etc (not impossible, but not as likely); it’s expected that you will be hopping from one field to the next and the goal is to build your career (a mix of what you’re good at and what you make of it), as well as keeping up to date in what’s going on in your field. The best thing is that if you’re not tied to a job, you can work long after the retirement age.
    I have at least two friends; one spent 15 years at one company and is now hopping from company to company and LOVES it; the top companies are literally fighting over her. She quit the other day just because it had been “two years already” she had been at one company, but she’s very good at what she does. Another spent about 7 at a company and realized what he knew no one in the company really did as well as he did in what he does (the company had him teaching other professionals in his spare time), and people kept asking for his knowledge, so he’s been hopping around all over the world; I literally never know where he is. Another did the same for about 7 years also and started his own company/ consultancy business a few years ago.

    • Robert Bell says:

      great comments Kammi. It defnitely depends upon the person, their career and their circumstances. This is why I think that it is so important that we all think about it at some point

  3. My hubs got an offered from another company for another job with pretty higher salary from his current work. But he refused it because he loves his job and he loves what he is doing.

  4. Simon Elstad says:

    Like with everything else there are pros and cons. Change jobs too much and subsequent employers may start questioning your loyalty and commitment. Its certainly a great way to get raises, learn new skills and expand one’s network.

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