Changing Jobs for More Money – Is it Worth It?

Does changing your job always equal more money?

With the way the economy is, it’s probably a moot question anyway. Would you change jobs if it meant you are going to be earning more money? But, it is a question that needs to be answered, because if the situation does present itself, you need to know how to act.

In my book, it’s not wise to change jobs when it’s a matter of just more money, because money comes and goes – what’s more important is job satisfaction and the extent to which you enjoy your job.

Consider a Job Change If…

Although the economy shows a few signs of picking up, jobs, especially the ones that offer the combination of stability and a good pay packet, are still scarce and few and far between. This means that it is wise to hold on to the job that you do have rather than go looking for something that pays better, unless:

  • You absolutely hate what you do: The most important aspect of a job is that you love what you do; if you don’t, you’re likely to be miserable and just go about the motions because you need the money. This in turn leads to mistakes and possible termination. So if you don’t love what you do, do what you love or learn to love what you do.
  • You really need the money: If you must make extra money to take care of debts that must be paid back, it’s ok to take up a new job that pays more if you’re sure about the reputation of the company and if you don’t have to make too many sacrifices in the process.
  • You don’t have to relocate: or make any other significant changes in your life that affect its quality. When you have to make too many changes in your life, you end up resenting it and take it out on your job.

When you change jobs just for the money, there’s no end to it; you tend to keep job-hopping all your life, flitting like a bee from flower to flower without really gathering anything of substance.

In short, you’re a rolling stone that gathers no moss. When you’re in a position in life that requires stability, it’s best to act with more responsibility and stick to something that you know and trust rather than tread into the unknown where your salary may not be steady or your job secure.

Are You Getting the Salary You Deserve?

Every year a local recruiting firm freely offers up the results of their salary survey. I love checking out these surveys and seeing how I measure up. Looks like I’m currently where I should be considering my category and compensation factors.

Prior to my current job I hadn’t been getting paid what I should have been according to these surveys. I was pretty naive when taking job offers early in my career and didn’t counter-offer once. That’s because I didn’t really know what I should be making. I just took what they were giving. 

To get me up to the appropriate level I eventually had to switch jobs because my employer at the time wasn’t willing to bump me up quick enough. Luckily it didn’t mean a big change for my Mrs. PT and I.

Of course, in your career, salary isn’t the only factor. You have to factor in the obvious: location, job satisfaction, benefits, growth potential, company strength, etc. 

However, all things being equal, you need to get the best salary that the market will pay. These salary surveys can give you an idea of what that is. Find out what you should be making at PayScale.com or Salary.com.

Should You Move for a Better Job?

Would you ever consider relocating to a city with more job opportunities? CNN Money recently released their Best Places to Live list. This year’s ranking was, for obvious reasons, heavily slanted towards cities that provided the most job opportunities. The top five cities were:

Frisco, TX (hey, this is my town!)
Ashburn, VA
Carmel, IN
Elliot City, MD
Cary, NC

Early in my career I made a move to a city with more opportunity. At the time I didn’t have any responsibilities or ties that could hold me back from moving. I didn’t have a wife or kids in school. I was free to find the best place for me at the time.

Looking back, I definitely consider it a good move from a career perspective. I’ve changed jobs three times within this city since first moving, and at each change, I had multiple job opportunities made available to me. I wouldn’t have had those I don’t think had I stayed put.

Now that I do have a wife and kid, as well as a community that I’m involved in, it would be a tough decision to make the move to a new city just for a job opportunity. Do you think you could do it? Have you made that move? I’d love to hear about it in the comments below.

Have you ever changed jobs for more money? I know I have, but I’d love to hear your story below in the comments…

Comments

  1. I’m considering changing jobs because I was temporarily laid off for a few weeks. However, I am very comfortable where I’m at and am making decent money. I have a potential job paying about 14% more but it is in the same industry which isn’t doing well now and outlook for the future is flat at best. Furthermore, the commute would be 3X as far and there is just too much unknown about the work environment. Therefore, I’m thinking about staying until a much better opportunity comes along.

  2. Yes I have changed jobs for more money and honestly I can say it was the biggest mistake I have made.

    I was in a very comfortable position making a decent amount of money, loved my job and things were great. Then, a job offer came along which potentially trippled my salary earnings and with a company whom had a great reputation in the industry I work in. I felt there were risks as I would be moving away from my home town, 300 miles away to a new city. But having considered these risks I felt it was worth the risk to take a shot what could have been great. As it turns out, I hated the job, couldn’t stand living in a place where I knew absolutely nobody.

    Now, I’ve quit the new job and moved back to my home city but working in a lesser job than I was originally in. Still kicking myself for leaving the original job I had, but it’s all about the life experience I’ve gained by going through this mistake, but at least I have a job at the moment, could be worse………

  3. The Biz of Life says:

    I’ve changed jobs for money and better opportunity several times, and turned down a good offer because it involved a move to another state that I wasn’t too keen on living in. Each move has worked out for me so far. Though work may not always be enjoyable, the compensation makes it tolerable.

  4. I feel for one to change jobs there should be reasoning behind it other than just money. You may leave a perfectly good job for more money only to find one you get to the new one that the work environment is horrible. While money plays a small role, I’d be content to stay somewhere with a good atmosphere.

  5. I have changed jobs for the money, and also changed careers for the money. The career change was way back when I did manual labor before I had a real skill to bargain with. After that, I changed jobs and moved to start my own business. It was for the money even though I wouldnt make the same initially but things worked out for the best.