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One of the most common questions we hear most often from our candidate network is this: “Why should I explore new job opportunities right now?”

Does this sound familiar? As an pharmaceutical/biotech executive search firm, we hear it a lot. Whether we get a direct call asking for additional information, or when we make an outbound call to a perspective candidate, this question has become one that we expect to hear.

Here are 3 points to ponder to determine if (or why) you should be exploring new job opportunities:

  1. Evaluate all department opportunities within your group. If you seem stuck in your current position, look at the “total job” first, before jumping to the next. We all go through stages of disappointment, discouragement, rejection, and missing out on that key promotion. When it happens, right away we want to flee, instead of fight, for recognition. Remember that attitude is everything! It’s important to take things in stride, and keep your chin up.

Take a good look at your current role on the team and evaluate how you are coming across to your boss and peers. Are people asking you questions? Did your last project turn heads? Are your recommendations moving forward? Step back and take a look at how you are perceived. We are all in phases of development in our life: We are moving forward, or moving back. Which one are you in? The answer to that could tell you what your next step should be.

2. Consider what your next planned promotion should be, based on your last performance evaluation. This is key. Normally your supervisor needs to hear from you, as to why moving to the next level is deserved. Too many times we don’t plant the seed for that next level promotion, and skip along with the status quo. Make yourself and your intentions known up front about that next career step. It’s a bold move for some people, but it shows initiative.

3. Make sure your bonus percentage and salary increase are in line with your performance. Many companies routinely ask their supervisors to write out their own evaluations to justify the salary increases, etc. This is ideal, and to your advantage. Be honest in the evaluation. Detail supporting documents and projects to support your own evaluation. Once you submit it, then your boss will meet you face-to-face to discuss it. Be ready with supporting information of your past projects and campaigns. In that meeting, you are “selling” something that is truly important: YOU.

If any two of the three scenarios above are in question, then it may be time to look elsewhere for new career opportunities. It never hurts to investigate a perspective call from a friend, recruiter, or an old boss. I hope these suggestions get you on a faster career track in the 2015!


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