-- guest post by Jessica Journey, MPA, CFREI recently made a series of difficult decisions and changed jobs. I know many young nonprofit professionals who have experienced similar circumstances - weighing the pros and cons of staying versus leaving - and ultimately decided to transition to a different organization.
Hopefully this post will help you make the most of that decision to change job! I will share with you how I formed and tested "hypotheses" during my job change, and I encourage you to do so too.
Before I changed jobs, I identified 3 big topics that I wanted to explore. These became my hypotheses to test. Then, I set up calendar reminders to reflect on my hypotheses 30, 60 and 90 days into the job transition.
Is this sub-sector really for me?
I had a feeling that my true niche was faith-based fundraising. But I wanted to know for certain, and my current job serves as perfect testing ground. So, as I transitioned back to a Christian school, I kept this question at the forefront. Whenever I was integrating faith and fundraising, I paid extra attention and reflected. Is this my best self? Does it come naturally to me? Could I imagine doing this even more?
Is this commute do-able?
My current job challenges me with my longest commute ever. An hour in the car each day seemed like a daunting task because I wondered where the extra hour would come from? Is that my workout time? Is that time with my child or husband? Is that unscheduled "free" time? I monitor this time impact weekly to make sure I'm prioritizing what is most important to me.
Am I ready for the career "next step"?
Many fundraisers aspire to be consultants, but is that what is next for me? I've completed a Master's degree, earned by CFRE international credential, and served as a fundraiser for a decade. In fundraising, I had experience in: doubling a department and starting one from scratch. But I had never restructured a department. This job allows me to test myself with this challenge and determine if I am ready to consult.
Whether you are exploring sub-sectors, geography, or long-term career goals, be intentional with each career decision and job change. Identify questions, test yourself, and gain helpful feedback on your career journey.
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