Is The Job Worth Moving For?
Published: Sep 23, 2017 By Kelly Bilodeau
To move or not to move? That's the question facing workers who receive an offer that requires them to relocate to a new town, a new state or even a new country.
On the one hand, it could be a great opportunity for your career…on the other, you have to uproot your entire life. How can you decide if an opportunity is worth the aggravation of boxing up your life and starting somewhere new?
It's really not as complex a decision as it may seem at first glance, say experts. A simple series of questions can help you decide whether to call the moving trucks, or to grow your career locally.
Before saying yes, ask yourself these questions:
Is it the right job?
The first question you need to ask yourself: is the job really worth it? "Can you say it's right for you?" says Anna Ranieri, MBA, PhD, a career counselor and executive coach. If not, it's probably not wise make the move.
How will it affect your family?
Your move might not only affect you if you're caring for elderly family members, have young kids in school, or a partner who loves his or her current position. Think about how it will affect others in your life before you take the leap.
Do you want live in the new location?
"If your favorite activity is surfing, you might not want to move to Minnesota," says Ranieri. Many people will research a job before they move, but not the location they're moving to. Take the time to visit and to consider if you really want to live there.
Who are you?
If you're a person who thrives on adventure and wants to explore, moving may be the perfect option, even if the job isn't the perfect fit. But if you're a homebody who likes security and staying close to home, it might be better to look for a job nearby even if moving is a great opportunity career-wise, says Ranieri.
What's the cost of living?
That big raise might not go too far if the cost of living is high at your new location. Check out housing and other costs to make sure the move is truly worth it for you.
Will I be happy if the job doesn't work out?
What if you move for the job, and the job falls through after a few months, says Ranieri. What then? Will you be happy to stay? Will there be other job opportunities in your new location?
What will it do for my career?
Sometimes it's worth a temporary move to a location that's less desirable to further your career—and sometimes it's not, says Alexandra Levit, a business and workplace speaker, consultant and coauthor of the book, Mom.B.A. Think about how it will position you for the future.
Do I even have to move?
Americans are less likely today, more than ever, to move to a new location for a job. According to the U.S. Census Bureau only 11.2 percent of Americans moved to a new location over a one-year period in 2016. There are a few reasons why people might be moving less often than they used to, says Levit, among them—many people today work remotely. "I see it happening all the time," she says. "People are getting jobs and don't live anywhere near the organization. They might commute in a couple times a month for meetings." If you're reluctant to move, it might be wise to ask if the company will consider a telecommuting arrangement before you pack your boxes.
Is this the right time?
It may be an exciting job, but it might not be the right time for you to take on a move. If you're six-months pregnant and want to be close to family, you should maybe wait. Keep in mind: your situation is always changing. The right time to move may have been five years ago or may be five years from now.
What's most important to me?
In the end, the decision about whether to move for a job needs to take many factors into account, but perhaps the most important one is what's most important to you at your stage of life and your career, says Ranieri. If your job takes top billing, or your priority is taking on an adventure and living somewhere new, the position could be the perfect opportunity. If family is your focus and you love your life at home, it may be better to just stay put.