THE ALMIGHTY GUT
Q: Dear Dr. Culp, Its time to reinvent myself, because the field Im in is contracting. Another field where I have experience seems to offer a great deal of opportunity; so Ive been updating my skills, reading about it and speaking with people about it.
Getting an offer in that field hasnt been the problem. Ive had two. Theyre both in good companies with good work environments. Compensation is fine, too. Ive been stalling both recruiters, but Ill need to make a decision soon.
Something is keeping me from deciding. Ive gone to a great deal of trouble to get myself ready and Ive enjoyed doing it. Whats holding me back?
A: Dear Indecisive, Think about how you felt in your interviews with the two companies. Were you excited about what you were discussing? Imagine how youd feel if today the two companies called up and said they couldnt hire you after all.
If youre not enthusiastic, dont make a sensible decision. Your heart isnt in it. Go after a job you want, one with compatible people, mission and style. Meanwhile, pay attention to your gut.
Q: Dear Dr. Culp, When I job hunted two years ago, I felt that I used up my network. People were very nice and helpful, but it took me so long to find work that I think they got tired of hearing from me.
My company hasnt survived the recession and weve been encouraged to start looking for other jobs. It isnt clear which of us wont survive the next round of layoffs. I feel just awful going back to my contacts this soon, but I didnt choose the timing. How should I handle this problem?
Betwixt and Between
A: Dear Betwixt, Over the past two years you must have made some good contacts at or through your current company. Youve mentioned nothing negative about your relationship with your boss. You must have a good co-worker, vendor and/or customer who could serve as a reference. They all probably have more up-to-date information about your work than the previous contacts.
What have you been doing outside of work? Where have you been using your skills in the community? Who there could be supportive?
Use your imagination and be resourceful. Look for at least three people around you who could provide fresh perspective about you.