• Sometimes, it can be tricky to determine when to leave your job and pursue another opportunity.
• WayUp CEO and cofounder Liz Wessel, who quit Google after two years, has some insight on timing your move.
• If the prospect of your next step is actually distracting you from your work, that’s a sign it’s time to move on.
WayUp CEO and cofounder Liz Wessel knew exactly when she needed to leave Google.
After all, she’d gone into the company with the intention of departing after two years to found her own business. She’d even told the recruiters at Google of her plans when she joined the tech giant full-time in 2012.
The recruiters approved of her ambitions. After two years, she left and launched WayUp – a job platform for college students and early-stage professionals – with cofounder JJ Fliegelman.
But, if you haven’t planned as far ahead as Wessel, how can you tell when it’s the right time to move on? How can you avoid jumping the gun or staying too long?
The answer to those questions really depends on the specific opportunity – and your personal circumstances. But if you can’t stop thinking of your next step, that’s a pretty good indicator that you should make your move, Wessel told Business Insider. That goes for whether it’s a new role, company, or a whole new industry.
“If you can’t do a good job at your job anymore because you’re spending all of your time thinking about another job opportunity, that’s probably a good sign,” she said.
Wessel said this applies whether or not you plan on starting your own business. She said she saw plenty of friends go through a similar period of distraction.
“The one thing we had in common was we couldn’t stop thinking about something else,” she said. “Like, ‘I just really want to work at this one tech startup that I’m just so passionate about’ or ‘I’m in finance but I just love this one fintech company.'”
Either way, one thing that shouldn’t affect your plans is worrying about how job-hopping might be perceived.
“It’s not about how often you switch jobs,” Wessel said. “As long as you’re doing things that you’re passionate about and that you’re learning from, I promise you, you will be able to tell that narrative in the next interview very well.”
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