by guest blogger: Corporate Executive
I once heard an interview with a famous actor where he discussed a failed movie shortly after winning a Oscar just a year before. Instead of being apologetic, he simply stated that sometimes you need to make a movie, regardless of quality, because you need money. I love the simple truth of that explanation because many of us can relate it to the ups and downs of careers in the corporate world.
Let’s face it, most of us are either not fortunate enough or not equipped to land in an ideal situation. And even if we do, corporate environments can change like the weather – just ask anyone who has survived reorganizations, acquisitions and change in management
So just like that actor, choosing to make that awful movie, we too make compromises, because it’s the right choice under the circumstances. In career planning there’s the ideal of finding the right match, environment and culture. Yet there’s little mention of how searching for that ideal situation needs to be balanced against availability of jobs in your area, economic downturns and personal circumstances.
If you have a mortgage, college tuition bills, daycare expenses or aging parents to care for, pragmatism has to rule. So you make a deliberate choice for money, even if that choice puts you in the wrong circumstances. And that should never be held against you if you can contribute and show results.
I carry a vision and hope of finding a that perfect setting where my ambition and hard work are perfectly synchronized with that intangible quality, that chemistry that makes me jump out of bed every morning, eager to go to work. I’ve worked in these environments and they can give you the ready rush of winning an Oscar.
What happens when your job search results in opportunities that are less than ideal? You settle and take that risk. You also choose to meet your responsibilities and you set your intention to succeed. Sometimes you land in the middle of cultural or organization changes that are bigger than your role and completely not under your control. Suddenly, you have one or two of these experiences and you dread being labeled a “job hopper.” There are too many stories of companies that hire, and even relocate, people only to restructure or eliminate their jobs soon after bringing new people on board.
I don’t think organizations do this deliberately, our world moves too fast now and organizations have to respond and adjust accordingly. I do think hiring managers can be naive when they disqualify applicants solely for frequent job changes. Some of us are deliberate risk takers who have to make choices within certain constraints to meet our responsibilities. Surely that is worth some consideration especially during economically and politically turbulent times?