UX Career: How to Decide Between Your Current Job and a New Opportunity
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UX Career: How to Decide Between Your Current Job and a New Opportunity

UX Career: How to Decide Between Your Current Job and a New Opportunity cover

A new job offer lands on your doorstep

Imagine this scenario: you are content with your current job and appreciate the privilege of working in the wonderful field of UX Design. Suddenly, you receive an unexpected phone call from a recruiter who saw your LinkedIn profile and wants to discuss a job opportunity.

Although you are happy with your current job, you agree to hear them out. Your expectations are low since you have only been at your current job for a short time, and you are quite satisfied where you are.

During the conversation, the recruiter provides you with details about the opportunity, including the salary and benefits. You're impressed. "It's a fantastic opportunity," you think.

At the end of the conversation, you're extremely confused. The offer is excellent, and the recruiter has already made it clear that if you're interested, the job is yours.

However, you are now faced with a dilemma. Should you leave your current job for this new opportunity or stay put?

We can't decide for you, but we can help you clarify your thoughts so you can make the best decision. Take a deep breath and join us as we delve into this article!

First: what are your values?

Quality of life, continuous growth, money, career, family, friendship, honesty, and so on.

Each of us is guided by a group of meanings that determine what we value more or less. These meanings shift as we go through different moments and situations in our lives.

Therefore, when you receive a new job offer in UX Design that leaves you unsure whether to accept it or not, reflect on what is important to you at this moment. Do you want:

  • Better financial conditions?
  • To be part of a company with more growth opportunities?
  • More quality of life?
  • To work in an honest environment with genuine and friendly people?
  • To be part of a team?

What is important to you?

It's important to recognize that our values can shift over time. What we prioritize today may not be the same as what we prioritize in the future, and that's perfectly normal.

For instance, you might currently prioritize financial stability over quality of life, but that could change in a couple of years.

To make a confident decision about whether or not to switch jobs, it's crucial to consider your current values.

We can explore this further by doing a simple exercise to identify your most important values.

Finding out what your values are

Create a list of 10 values that hold significance in your life. Consider including values such as family, friendship, honesty, quality of life, continuous growth, career, respect, passion, freedom, or any other values that you deem important.

Once you have listed your values, set a timer for 1 minute and eliminate 4 of them. Then, set the timer for 30 seconds and eliminate 2 more values. Finally, set the timer for another 30 seconds and eliminate 1 more.

By the end of this exercise, you will have identified the 3 values that are currently the strongest for you. I understand that other values may be important to you, but right now, your primary focus may be on something else. It's all about finding a balance that works for you.

You can give this exercise another go with similar or different values. The idea is to start with a variety of options and gradually narrow them down while feeling the pressure of having to make choices.

After completing this exercise, you may want to consider how the identified values can guide your decisions and actions moving forward.

Reading tip: 11 Fears That Hinder Your Transition to a Career in UX Design

What is the company like?

Every professional association, whether it's in UX Design or not, involves certain rights and responsibilities for all parties involved. It's akin to a partnership. Would you enter into a partnership with someone you don't know well?

That's why it's critical to learn more about the company that has offered you a new job. By doing so, you can determine whether:

  • Is it a company that has a strong culture in UX Design?
  • Is it a growing company?
  • Will I have contact with challenging projects?
  • Is UX Design valued, and are the people friendly?
  • Am I the first UX Designer in the company, or will I work with a team?
  • Will I have the opportunity to learn something new that is compatible with my goals?
  • How much autonomy will I have?
  • Will I have a good quality of life?

When you're looking for answers to these questions, there are a few things you can do to get more clarity. You can check out the company's website, look up current employees on LinkedIn, and even ask your friends if they have any insights.

It's important to remember that your own values and priorities should guide your search.

For example, if you're looking for opportunities to grow professionally, make sure the company culture aligns with your goals. Take a look at their career development program and see if other employees have been promoted recently. It's all about finding a good fit for you!

Don't be afraid to ask!

One last tip on this topic: use that moment when the recruiter asks if you have any questions about the company during the interview.

Most people don't ask any questions and end up missing out on a great opportunity to get to know the company and obtain important information to make a decision.

Now that you have the necessary information, you can begin assessing the potential benefits of transitioning from your current job role to a new opportunity.

Be honest when making comparisons

The time has come! Finally, you will be able to compare the proposals and decide. Write it down because it's easier to visualize.

On one side, put all the answers you got from the new company; on the other, evaluate if your current company has a better, equal, or worse response to the same questions.

For example: Will I have contact with challenging UX Design projects? Compare the answer from the new company with the one you currently work for. But be honest in your response.

Sometimes, we may be presented with new opportunities that seem too good to pass up. However, it's important to remember that just because something is new doesn't necessarily mean it's better.

Before making any decisions, it's important to take a step back and reflect on the potential for growth and development within your current organization.

By approaching the matter rationally, you can compare the short and long-term opportunities offered by both companies. While a higher salary may be enticing, you should also consider your personal development and growth in the long run.

Reading tip: LinkedIn for Designers: Tips to Boost Your Profile

Is it wise to accept a job offer based solely on the financial benefits it offers?

When someone is offered a job, they might understandably focus on the salary being offered. However, it's important to remember that there are many factors to consider when making a critical decision, and finances should not be the only priority.

It's important to keep in mind that we can quickly adjust to a change in salary. But when it comes to dealing with an unpleasant work environment where we feel undervalued and see no room for growth, that can cost our health.

So, while money is undoubtedly important, you should also consider your personal growth and career development. Remember, your career determines your earnings, not the other way around.

Your Quality of Life (QoL)

There is no right or wrong for accepting or rejecting a job offer. Each person has their own value weight system.

If QoL is your priority, don't overlook it when considering your options. But, just like with the financial aspect or any other value, it shouldn't be evaluated independently. You need to take all factors into account when making a decision.

Think about what's more important to you. Would you be willing to sacrifice a bit of your life quality if it meant faster growth and development in the long run?

Or are there certain aspects of your quality of life that you just can't compromise on?

Maybe you value the flexibility of a home office, and that's totally fine! Just make sure it's truly what you want so you don't end up regretting your decision down the line.

Reading tip: User Interview: Keys to Gather Insightful Information

Leaving the company too soon: is it okay?

Deciding whether or not to leave a company can be a tricky choice, and there are many factors to consider.

You'll want to think about things like your future opportunities, chances for personal growth, and whether the company's values align with yours.

It's also important to keep in mind how long you've been working there. If you haven't had much time to develop your skills or work on big projects, you might want to hold off on making any major decisions.

If you have been with the company for a very short period of time, say less than 6 months, it might be worth considering what your future prospects are. After all, in such a short time, you may not have had the opportunity to work on a major project or develop as you had hoped, or you may have already seen that the company's values do not align with your own.

But if you feel like the company doesn't respect you or your values, or if you've experienced any kind of mistreatment, it might be time to start looking at other job opportunities.

In those cases, accepting a new job could be the smartest move.

How do senior designers make their decisions about job opportunities?

Making career decisions can be challenging, especially when choosing between staying in your current job or exploring new opportunities.

Product Designer Jon Vieira, and our mentor, Felipe Melo, comment on how they faced this dilemma.

Jon Vieira

It is quite important to develop a long-term strategy that aligns with your personal style. As a contractor/freelancer, I am exposed to various projects and different companies. This aligns with my values of always seeking something new. As an Interaction Designer, I value the UX side of things, so I focus on job opportunities where a significant portion of the work is related to that.

In other words, you establish the best places and companies that fit your goals based on your values and what is important to you. Everything must revolve around what you want for your career and personal life. Self-awareness is crucial in this kind of situation.

Felipe Melo

Create a list of barriers – things that stand in the way of your dreams – and think about what you need to do to overcome them, one by one. That's what I did. I don't have a European passport, but I work outside of Brazil.

Felipe's advice is crucial for starting to act towards your goals. Once you clearly understand where you want to go, aligned with your values and dreams, it's time to act.

Make a list of all the necessary steps that need to be taken and identify any barriers that need to be overcome. This way, you can start moving forward with small actions that will bring you closer and closer to your goals.

Keep in mind that achieving your goals is a process, not an overnight success. It requires patience, determination, and consistency.

Reading tip: How to Pivot Into a UX Design Career: 10 Initial Steps

Final thoughts

There is no one-size-fits-all formula or rule when it comes to deciding whether to accept a new job offer in UX design.

Your choice should reflect your individual values, goals, and perspective on how this opportunity can bring you closer to your ultimate destination.

Being honest with yourself and your current employer is paramount. With these considerations in mind, you can make an informed decision that aligns with your professional and personal aspirations.

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