Monday, May 18, 2009

I’m sort of being head-hunted!

A friend told me about an open job at her company, and said she was going to give my contact information to the hiring manager. I sort of told her ok, but I’m not really looking to move just now. I figured either I wouldn’t be qualified for the position or he wouldn’t ever call me.

Well, he called me. And I’m qualified, although possibly overqualified. The job sounds interesting—sort of similar to what I do now, sort of different, and with a smattering of the responsibilities I used to have (and have missed) from my first job. I have an interview next week, and I don’t know what to do.

I like my current job’s day to day responsibilities. I like the people I work with. I’m in school, with one year left to go. I promised myself at one point that I wouldn’t even look for anything new until I was done with school and had received all the tuition reimbursement I’ve been counting on. The layoffs have been stressful but at least here I have two and a half years’ experience with the company and I know that I’m valuable to them. I’m afraid that if I jumped ship and the new company had layoffs, I’d be first on the chopping block. I feel guilty leaving my boss and my colleagues at such a time of change. New company wants someone to start right away.

This is not about money. I’m not going to pit the potential job offer against my current company to try to get them to give me a raise. They’ve been laying off people right and left, there’s a hiring freeze, and we’re still hemorrhaging money each month. On the other hand, I could always use more money and this isn’t personal, it’s business, right?

I’m alternately talking myself out of the job and into the job, and they haven’t even offered it to me. I have a tendency to shy away from change and I’m very convincing when I do so. So I will lay it out here, readers. What’s your opinion?

Both companies are large, top publishing houses in New York City, with about the same amount of reputation cred.

Current job

  • Comfortable/content
  • Can afford my life on this salary
  • Enjoy most of my day to day work and colleagues (90%)
  • Feel needed and appreciated
  • Could be a bit more challenged (basically entry level position after 2 ½ years, although it’s been quite tailored to my skills)
  • Still a direct assistant to someone
  • Tuition reimbursement in progress (to the tune of $10,000 expected over the next year)
  • Close to school, with a boss who’s great about me leaving early for class
  • Not a whole lot of room for upward mobility—someone will have to leave for me to be promoted, and she’s not going anywhere anytime soon
  • Would feel terribly guilty leaving right now what with all the changes. I’m sure I’d get over this, but I don’t want to discount it in the interim.
  • Stressful environment re: layoffs. I'm pretty sure I'm safe as long as my boss has a job, but not so confident that my entire department won't get shut down.

Possible job

  • A bit more interesting work, including some design work (actual marketing department)
  • Possible higher salary? No clue. Would not take for decrease in pay or even lateral move.
  • New, different, shiny.
  • Not a direct assistant, just general support staff (answering no one’s phones but my own)
  • Tuition reimbursement not guaranteed, though I’d negotiate for it
  • Farther from home and school by about 25 minutes
  • Possibly shorter hours, eaten up by longer commute
  • New kid on the block is usually the first to get cut in layoffs, right? No clue how this particular company seems to be doing in that regard.

The best reason I can come up with is new, different, shiny.But unless I hear that the position has been filled, I’m going to go to the interview. I’m also going to see if I can find out even a ballpark for the salary. What would you do, based on the list above?


  1. If they can match your current perks [tuition reimbursement, a big enough bump in salary to compensate for the longer commute] and would be willing to give you a contract, I'd go for it. Oh wait, also, I'd want to be sure that there was room for advancement. Of course, I know that most companies are at-will and aren't willing to sign contracts but it's worth a try.

  2. In your position, the first thing I'd do is work on learning more about your last point - find out about their stability. If you're satisfied by that and can get a decent package, I say make the leap - you'd probably be saving someone somewhere in your current company from getting laid off.

  3. Don't forget to compare NYC COLA to your city's COLA.

    NYC is really.. really expensive. I totally get why people live in hovels now.


Thanks for commenting!