Imagine yourself considering two job offers:
The first opportunity, working for an established and profitable company, doing similar type of work you are doing right now with a 10% increase in salary.
The second opportunity, working for a small agency, where you will be able to contribute more of your creative abilities and be involved in many aspects of growth. Here, your pay will be lower by 10% from current and since most of the funding comes from grants, it represents some degree of financial uncertainty.
If you are thinking that I would advise you to follow your heart and not your head and take the more fulfilling job, you are wrong. As we are all unique in our personalities and risk tolerance, accepting offer no. 2 might cause you a high degree of anxiety and might damper your ability to perform well.
I have developed a simple three step process, which designed to enable you to gradually become emotionally ready to accept a position that feels like a dream job yet makes you very nervous doing so.
First, take a step back and develop your overall Personality Risk Factor (PRF). The rankng is on a scale is 1 to 10, where 1 represents that you’re totally driven by fear and don’t like to deal with any uncertainty under no circumstances. At 10, your decisions are driven by passion and self-confidence and you are always enthusiastic to take a calculated risk with a significant upside.
Now, that you know your PRF, analyzing the career opportunity at hand, and using the same scale, come up with ranking for your Job Risk Factor (JRF).
Now, you have two numbers: PRF (let’s say its 5) and JRF (let’s say its 7). I strongly advise you to look for a job with JRF 2-3 points above your current PRF, as in this example.
What is the logic behind it, you ask? Job seeker with low PRF makes decisions based on fear of the unknown (focusing on empty part of the glass) and regardless of how talented s/he is, the chances of personal and professional growth are self-limited. As you navigate your career related decisions, my system will gradually move you away from focusing on the empty part of the glass to the filled part, which gradually becomes larger and larger.
In order to increase our risk tolerance and dare to have a successful career, we need to step outside our confirm zone and gradually learn to make decisions based on fulfillment and happiness and not based on fear.
Each time you consider changing jobs, pick an opportunity that is 2-3 points higher that your current PRF. It might challenge you in the short term but in a long term, your personality risk factor will increase, your jobs will be more and more satisfying, leading to feeling accomplished and happy.
Best of luck, and if you have any comments/questions, please don’t hesitate reaching out, Elie