Market Leader, Hong Kong & Southern China, Korn Ferry Professional Search
Breaking the illusion of the “good old days”
Three months ago, I left my hectic marketing job to take on another marketing role with much less responsibility and stress while retaining similar pay. I thought it would be great to be rid of many of the management responsibilities I’d had and to enjoy a more balanced life. But I have come to realise that I’m actually quite bored and missing the olden days in which I was the one who makes decisions. I was approached by my old boss that I might come back if I wish. That offer is becoming more appealing by day. Still, I can’t help but suspect I’m just forgetting all the negatives that caused me to leave in the first place. Would it be a mistake to go back?
It is hard to ascertain if it is right or wrong to go back to the previous role / company. How to make a successful career change has always been a hot topic amongst professionals. Indeed, making a career change is a huge decision as it is an investment of your time and money.
Personally, I cannot agree with individuals who move on to a new job solely for monetary reasons. Before you move to your current job, did you ask yourself why you seek a change? If work-life balance is one of the most important things to you right now and that your current job allows you to achieve that, you should stick to the choice you made. On the contrary, if you realise that you are still not satisfied with your current job scope and business authorities after months’ of trying, I would agree that this job is not a good fit and it is likely that you may have taken up this opportunity under stress.
How people adapt to a new job is another burning issue, as it is the fundamental step for the next chapter of your career story. Firstly, you need to forget about the “good old times”. Not being able to let go of the past is the top reason why people miss their previous jobs. This is also why they are not able to identify some of the best opportunities because they have yet to embrace change.
Secondly, you need to think in positives, not in negatives. Change could take place anytime, anywhere. No matter what your choice is — to continue working in your current role or go back to your previous job, at the end of the day success will only come if you persevere and keep to your choice. In a changing work environment, your thoughts determine your actions and your actions will in turn determine your success.
My advice would be to give yourself more time to adjust to your current role. There is a possibility that you have yet to fully ease into your current role, and this had led to you feeling bored and missing the good old days.
Last but not least, I suggest you take a moment to consider what your short-term (3 – 5 years) and long-term career goals are, what is the best career path for yourself, as well as identify the drivers and motivators that would enable you to succeed, before deciding to either return to your previous role / company or even look for a new job. Otherwise, you might get stuck in a vicious cycle and change jobs frequently, eventually leading to career failure.