WorkWise Q&A: How can I choose between family and job?

culp@workwise.netMarch 10, 2013 


Q: Dear Dr. Culp, Last year I wanted a job so badly that I agreed to rent our house and relocate about 1,200 miles. We’ve rented here and the job has gone all right. Our children attend local schools.

Meanwhile, the company has asked me to relocate again, because I worked myself out of a job. The offer is attractive, with my salary and benefits to be increased by one-third and our living in desirable new city. I’d have to leave my family here in April to finish school. I never thought an offer would make me even consider living apart.


A: Dear Torn, Only you can decide whether the uncertainty and stress of another job hunt would be greater than accepting a job elsewhere that separates you from your family. Did your boss deceive you about the job?

Have you considered renegotiating the rental agreement, returning to your house to live permanently and job-hunting again? Check back with employers and contacts to see whether the market has changed. Explore other companies in your current location. Flood yourself with information about markets and consider whether moving back this soon would have more repercussions than possible unemployment or short-term separation.



Q: Dear Dr. Culp, I’m in my 50s, with industry leaders all over my resume. After three years of job hunting, I’m not certain I’ll find a job in my field. I’ve had some offers, but they were $15,000 or more less than I was making before.

I’ve been compromising to keep myself employed, though, in a variety of jobs that have nothing to do with my favorite skills, don’t require my experience and don’t need a college education. I don’t know what I’ve done wrong.


A: Dear Stuck, Gather all of the reasons you’ve been turned down from jobs in your field in the last three years. Is there a pattern, such as a missing skill, or are there different reasons for each one? Has your field left you behind? Either address the reasons for being rejected or channel all of the energy you expend in unrelated jobs into redirecting yourself.

How about this: Go to work in a business you might eventually buy. Or get the financing to buy one now, if you can. Your third option is to start one from scratch. Don’t lose any more time and hope. Expect to earn less. Make a reasoned change.


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