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Shiftless job-hopper or ambition ladder climber?

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by goplayintramurals, Aug 5, 2008.

  1. I'm sure this has been asked sometime during the history of this board, but I can't for the life of me find where so I'll give it a go.

    I'm about a year and a half out of school, landed my first gig, worked for there for a year and moved on to a new shop. My first job wasn't bad by any stretch of the imagination, the location just got old very quickly and I decided that after a year it was time to move on. No big deal.

    I'm just getting comfortable in my new job and, it too fortunately, is going just peachy. I'm in no hurry to go anywhere. Looking ahead, though, I'm wondering what kind of timeline is typical/prudent for reporters to move on to that next opportunity.

    Obviously, I've got goals. I want to move closer to home. Work at a bigger daily. Make more than 24K a year. Barring things like layoffs, unworkable conditions or general misery, though, when did it finally click for some of you that it was time to move on. How long should you stay somewhere to avoid looking like a non-committal schmuck? Is a year suitable? A minimum of two? Does a time roll around where you just magically know it's time to start rounding up the clips? Or do you wait for an opportunity to smack you in the face?

    Any thoughts from people who have been down this road would be greatly appreciated. Or people that haven't. I'm not really picky.
  2. BujuBanton

    BujuBanton Member

    I'm no seasoned vet by any means, but I think if you move to bigger papers each time after being somewhere a year or two I think people understand that. If you hop around from weekly to weekly or whatever I think that might raise some eyebrows.
  3. old_tony

    old_tony Well-Known Member

    I've been where I want to be since the start of my career. As long as they'll have me, I'm staying. So I guess I would be of no assistance here. But good luck. I don't envy anyone starting out in this business at this time.
  4. Frankly, in this climate, the only thing you should be worried about is looking out for your own best interest.

    If it's a better job, go for it -- whether you've been on your current job four months or four years.

    I was already looking for a new job before I even started my first one.

    As mentioned above, if you make a series of lateral moves, be prepared to explain it to potential employers. But if you're moving up the ladder, no one should question you.
  5. TheSportsPredictor

    TheSportsPredictor Well-Known Member

    I thought this said shirtless job-hopper.
  6. buckweaver

    buckweaver Active Member

    I agree with ... every word of that.
  7. pallister

    pallister Guest

    I prefer the term "professional vagabond."
  8. Shiftless and shirtless often go hand-in-hand I guess.

    I appreciate everyone's input though. Maybe I'm just hyper-analyzing and trying to stick a set of rules to something that really isn't all that complicated. The last thing I want, though, is to be sitting through an interview at my dream job or something and the guy/gal to pull out that whole "what's with the four jobs in four years?" bit.
  9. imjustagirl

    imjustagirl Active Member

    Then you say, "Each job was a new opportunity, a different challenge, and I took everything I had learned from the previous stop and moved up a step closer to where I am now."
  10. forever_town

    forever_town Well-Known Member

    The right opportunity comes when it does. Whether you work at a particular shop for one year, five years or two and a half months (I've told THAT story before!) doesn't make a whole lot of difference.

    Having said that, if you no longer feel challenged by your job, it's time to move on.
  11. buckweaver

    buckweaver Active Member

    A legitimate concern. And, yes, you'll have to know the answer to that.

    If the answer makes sense to you, inside, then you should be able to convey that to your potential employer. If you don't like your answer, that will probably come across in an interview, too.

    If you're truthful, a good employer will accept your answer for what it is -- doesn't mean you'll get the job, but at least you'll know THAT's not the reason why. Which is all you can ask for.
  12. Joe Williams

    Joe Williams Well-Known Member

    Fourth job in three years after graduation got me to a major league baseball beat. No one blinked about "job-hopping".
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