MINISTERIAL TRANSITIONS & Setting the Record Straight on Switching Jobs

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: I’m writing a Doctor of Ministry course for a nationally known seminary on pastoral transitions. The average pastor will go through 4 to 5 translations in his or her ministerial career.

Yet leadership developmemt departments of denominations typically don’t prepare us for these transitions. However, my very first consultation over 30 years ago was to coach a ministry transition. And to my surprise it went very well. And, it cemented in my heart the confirmation that I was to go into consulting.

Therefore, I’ve put together a course on best practices. To give you a preview, here’s one of the research based articles I’ll be utilizing from Harvard Business Review.

“Setting the Record Straight on Switching Jobs” by Amy Gallo, Harvard Business Review, 10/15.

… experts have described the current labor market as “candidate-driven.” Job seekers hold more power than employers, a trend that seems to be deepening.

So does this mean when switching jobs, you’re in the driver’s seat? Not necessarily. But it does mean that you can’t rely on “age-old” guidance.

2. “Stay at a job for at least a year or two — moving around too much looks bad on a resume.” 

“This is a popular piece of conventional wisdom,” says Sullivan, and it’s simply not true anymore. First of all, it’s not always realistic. “There are many times when you really need to leave your job without anything else,” says Fernández-Aráoz. You may need to relocate because of your spouse’s job or quit to take care of a family member.

Second, short stints no longer hurt a resume…

3. “Don’t quit your job before allowing your current employer to make a counter offer.”

If you’re a valuable employee, Sullivan says that smart companies will make an attempt to convince you to stay. “If you’re on their priority list, it would be considered ‘regrettable turnover’ for them and they’ll do what they can to keep you.” Counteroffers have become much more common… “They usually come with some form of flattery, promises, and even better conditions,” he says.

But be careful, he warns: “In my three decades of experience, I’m genuinely convinced that most counteroffers are bad for all parties.” He gives two reasons you shouldn’t accept a counteroffer. First, there was a reason you started to look for another job and that’s unlikely to change despite your employer’s promises. “The rule of thumb among recruiters used to be that 80% of those accepting counteroffers leave, or are terminated, within six to 12 months, and that half of those who accept them re-initiate their job searches within 90 days.” Even if your manager is able to make good on the promises in a counteroffer, there is the issue of broken trust. “They may still consider you less loyal and therefore offer you lower chances of future development.” Second, Fernández-Aráoz says, “you’ve made a commitment to the new company and you should honor it.”

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