Don’t worry! A little blip on your resume is not going to derail your career. If you’ve made an unsettling career mistake, accepted a job only to start and find out it’s really not the one for you, this episode is a must listen. When people are in this situation they always feel isolated, confused and like they’re the first one to ever make a bad career decision. But that’s just not the case. And you don’t need to stick it out and try and force it to work. Just move on and have faith that future employers will not care at all if you have that three month mistake on your resume – if anything it’s a testament to your own self-awareness and strength that you made the decision to find something more aligned with your needs!

Links I mentioned in this episode:

43. Should I make it work, or leave quickly? – Transcript

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[00:00:55] Hi, [00:01:00] there I’m Bec McFarland the host of the Pop Your Career Podcast. As a career coach, I’m most passionate about helping my clients to discover their own personal flavour of career fulfillment. In this podcast, we are going to be exploring ways that you too can feel more fulfilled by your work. So strap yourself in, get ready for the ride. The tips around here are fast and in abundance.

[00:01:24] Hello. Hello. It’s Bec McFarland here, helping you do better and be better in your career. And I just want you to imagine you have applied for a new role. You got offered, you accepted, you’ve started, you’ve done your best to try and make it work, but you’re really unhappy. You’re feeling quite unfulfill.

[00:01:53] Maybe the role is not what you expected it to be. Maybe the organization is not what you expected it to be. Maybe [00:02:00] there’s some tension in the team. Maybe you don’t like your manager. Maybe you have found that the commute is too long. You thought that it would be okay, but now you realize that it’s actually impacting on yourself and your family life.

[00:02:16] What should you? I get a lot of clients that kind of come to me and they’ve got a lot of concern about this, and they usually feel like they should do whatever they can to make it work. But often, I think that is not necessarily the best option. If you are feeling in the early stages of working for an employer that it’s not a good fit, chances are things are probably not going to change.

[00:02:42] Most people are really paranoid though about what it’s going to look like on their resume. You started a job, you’re there for a month or two months or three months, and then you move on and you get a job somewhere else. But honestly, I think that most of the time this is [00:03:00] just an unfounded fear. Of course, there are going to be employers out there who are going to discriminate against you because of the fact that, you know, they see it as being a bad thing.

[00:03:11] But honestly, I think it’s something that’s really easy to explain. Much easier than a lot of other circumstances that you could be in. So what I’d encourage you to do is to definitely take the time to evaluate what’s going on. Are there any slight tweaks or changes that you need to make that could improve things in your workplace?

[00:03:32] Does it mean that maybe you could have a conversation with your manager or with a colleague or someone else in the workplace to help you see things differently or change the things that are bothering you? Would it help you to actually work with a career coach to maybe look into your mindset or understand what is going on for you that is making you feel like this workplace isn’t a good fit for you?

[00:03:56] Lots of, lots of different actions that you can take. And yeah, absolutely, [00:04:00] like take a look into it. I think if you don’t like, if you don’t ask yourself some of these questions and you don’t approach the situation with some curiosity, then you are setting yourself up for a lot of unanswered questions.

[00:04:14] And to be honest, I think that you’ll always wonder what really went wrong. But in saying this, I also think that if things aren’t working out, it’s totally okay to leave. You’ll go for your next job interview and sure, they’ll probably ask you, you know, you’ve only been in your current job for the last two months and you’re already looking to move on.

[00:04:36] Why is that? And I would just tell the truth. I don’t think that means that you’re gonna go in there and say, oh, you know, my manager’s a total bitch and I hate her, and I don’t like the way that they operate. But I do think it’s totally okay to say, You know, I don’t think it’s a good fit, or I went into the role believing that it was going to be more of X, Y, Z, and it turned out [00:05:00]that it was more of A, B, C. Uh, you know, so now I’m, I’m looking at giving myself the opportunity to get my career back on track, and I thought it would be a good idea to do that quickly, rather than prolonging the inevitable.

[00:05:15] We tell ourselves a lot of stories about these things that we’re gonna see on resumes, things like quick movements or gaps. And we always feel this need to explain ourselves or put something in the resume or the cover letter. I don’t think that’s necessary. Most employers are going to really understand if you do need to make a move like this.

[00:05:38] And if they are wondering, if they’re curious, if they wanna know, they will ask you the question. I don’t think there’s any need for you to preempt that in really any of your documentation. We don’t necessarily wanna draw a whole lot of attention to it or make it seem like there was drama that there wasn’t.

[00:05:56] But I do think that if you are asked the question, then you know [00:06:00]it is a chance just for you to tell them the truth. Let them know. This is why. You know, I feel like it didn’t quite work out. It wasn’t what I thought it was gonna be, and then just move on. It is not going to be something that’s going to have a huge impact on the future of your career. I am sure that, you know, in five years, in 10 years time, it’ll be a total blip on the radar and you probably won’t even remember it, or it’ll give you something to laugh at, uh, later on.

[00:06:29] Now in saying that, if this is happening to you regularly, and if you have moved into new roles a couple of times and you’ve found yourself in this situation where you’re like, oh, oh, this isn’t working out. This isn’t what I thought it would be, then I would suggest to you that you need to be a little bit more discerning as part of the recruitment process. Talked about this a little bit before on this podcast, but I can definitely do another episode about this in the future if it is something that you’re interested in exploring a little bit more.

[00:06:59] But [00:07:00] what I see is that there is a really big gap between being offered a role and then accepting the role. But unfortunately, most people tend to neglect this gap or they don’t spend the time, actually taking a moment to see what’s going on. What I mean by this is that often, particularly when we’ve been looking for a job for a while, or when we’re excited about an opportunity, we get that call to say, I’d love to offer you the job, and our immediate reaction is, oh my God, yes, I’m gonna take it.

[00:07:33] And then we just accept, because that’s what you do, right? If you get offered a job, then you accept it. But here’s the thing, you don’t have to accept it. You don’t have to accept it immediately. It is perfectly fine to ask for a little bit of time to say, yeah, sure. You know, I’ll need 24 to 48 hours to just think this through and talk to my family about it.

[00:07:55] Or you know, also okay for you to say, yeah, you know what, I’m really [00:08:00]interested in this opportunity, but I’d like to find out a little bit more about the organization and what it’s like to work there. I was wondering if it would be possible for me to take one of your team members out for a coffee and just ask them some questions about their experience working there, just so that I can make sure that I make the right decision.

[00:08:16] There’s a lot of these steps that you can take to do your due diligence before accepting a role that will definitely help you to avoid these situations that you could find yourself in. You know, working in a place where you go, uh, you know, what did I do ? This is the wrong bit. And, uh, I have a lot of clients who come to me.

[00:08:36] You know, have experienced this at some time in their lives or their careers, and they wanna do everything they can to make sure that it doesn’t happen again. If it is something that you’re struggling with, working with a career coach can definitely be a really great idea because it can just help you to do that due diligence to approach the situation with that calm attitude and the curiousness to make sure that you [00:09:00] have checked all of the boxes and that you’ve looked into whatever you need to look into to make sure that you are making a really positive decision.

[00:09:09] I hope this has been helpful advice to you, and I am here to help if you find yourself in this situation. But again, don’t be paranoid. You don’t need to worry about this or create stories for yourself. If something doesn’t work out, it’s okay to just say that and move on.

[00:09:29] Have a great week and I’ll see you in the next episode.

[00:09:31] Thanks so much for listening to the Pop Your Career podcast. I hope that you’ve enjoyed today’s tips and that you found value in what I’ve shared with you. If you like your career advice quick and entertaining, I would love for you to subscribe. Also leave me a rating and a review. If you wanna continue the conversation, come and join me over on social media. You can find me everywhere at Pop Your Career. I’ll see you soon.

[00:09:57] [00:10:00]

About the author 


Bec McFarland is an experienced HR practitioner, manager, career coach and the creator of Pop Your Career. She delights in sharing practical, straight to the point career advice, spending time with her family and eating Mexican food.