October 11, 2019

Should I Stay or Should I Go? A Guide to Knowing if You Should Change Jobs, and How to Pick the Right One

BIGfish public relations blog photo

As someone who recently made the decision to leave my previous agency to join BIGfish, I wanted to share some tips that helped me decide when it was the right time to switch jobs and how to choose a new agency that’s right for you. Read on to hear how I knew BIGfish was the perfect move for me and why it might be for you too (psst … we’re hiring!)

How to Know When to Change Jobs

  1. You’re Too Comfortable
    • Being comfortable at a job is a great thing – you love your coworkers, get along great with your boss, know what you’re doing and don’t stress about your daily responsibilities. But how do you know when comfortable turns into TOO comfortable? If you find yourself coming into the office later and later, rarely asking questions about projects assigned to you, or spending more time talking to colleagues about weekend plans than workday responsibilities, odds are you may be too comfortable. This might be an indication you’re ready for a new environment that’ll snap you back into a career-focused mentality.
  2. You Want to Experience New Opportunities that Aren’t Available
    • You know that one thing (or multiple things) you’ve been dying to do in your job, but the opportunity just hasn’t managed to present itself yet even though both you and your boss are working hard to get you there? Oftentimes, it’s not the fault of your current job that you’re not getting that experience – it may be the types of clients you’re working with, how your team is staffed, or just the fact that it’s not possible at that moment. But, if it’s important to you that you get that experience in order to advance in your career, looking for a job that can offer that opportunity may be your best bet. For me, I was looking for the opportunity to take my clients directly to national media in order to tell their stories in a hands-on way. Within the first few months at BIGfish, I was booking and staffing a media tour in NYC with outlets like O, The Oprah Magazine and CNET. 
  3. You Want to Learn Something New
    • Sometimes there’s a moment when you realize that no matter how much you enjoy your job, you’re ready to learn a new skill. In that case, what better way to learn something new than to learn how a whole new group of people operate? A new job can provide a different perspective on the same types of projects you worked on at your last job, whether it’s as simple as learning a new way to tackle media outreach, or as significant as learning how to approach PR for a new industry. So far at BIGfish, I’ve learned how to do things as simple as operating a Mac (I’ve been a PC girl all my life!) and as complex as diving into industries such as unmanned aerial vehicles, sensor technology, and AI-enabled plumbing technology.

How to Choose the Right Job for You

  1. Check Out the Company’s Social Pages
    • Just as your social media is an extension of your personality – it’s the same thing with a company! Assess their brand voice and the content they post and see if it feels like a fit for you. Are they cheeky and funny in their social posts? Do they show what a day-in-the-life looks like? Are there pictures of cute “office dogs”? How much of their social revolves around culture and how much focuses on clients? These factors can all give you a sense of who the company is and if your personalities line up. (Check out BIGfish’s Instagram and Twitter to see our day-to-day lives).
  2. Read Case Studies and Research Clients
    • Aside from what life will be like culturally at a new job, you have to be sure that the work you’ll be doing is in line with your interests and where you see your career heading. The best way to do that is to dig into previous work done by the company you’re interested in. Check out case studies, previous coverage, and do some research on the clients they represent, because they could soon be your clients. (Check out BIGfish’s case studies for examples of how we work).
  3. Ask About Specific Experience/Opportunities You’re Looking For
    • The best way to know if a job is the right one for you is to ask. Don’t be afraid to bring examples of experiences or opportunities that you’re interested in having to your interview and lay them out on the table. Whoever is interviewing you will appreciate your passion and eagerness to learn, and will be able to tell you if you can expect to have those experiences should you get that job.
  4. Leave an Interview Feeling Comfortable, Not Anxious
    • The surest sign that a job is right for you is to leave your interview feeling comfortable, confident and excited, rather than anxious. While an interview is, just that, an interview, when it’s the right fit, it should feel like a conversation with people who you can picture as colleagues. Discussions about your past experiences and opportunities you’re looking for at your next job should feel like mutually beneficial conversations about growth, education, and not only why you’re a good fit for the company, but why the company is a good fit for you.

Have you ever switched jobs? What was the experience like? Let us know on Twitter or in the comments below!
If you think now is the right time for you to look into a new job, check out the BIGfish career page to see if the right job for you is here with the BIGteam!

BIG fish PR is an unconventional agency that helps its clients redefine their industries.