Are Your Career Assets Frozen?

Loyalty to your employer is a great virtue. Trust is in short supply and wherever you can find it and maintain it this is an admirable and desirable circumstance.

However, staying too long with the same organization or in the same role can also reduce your market value and negatively impact the value of your greatest pre-retirement asset, namely, your career.

Here is a simple example:

John earns $150,000 per year and stays at his current employer for 20 years. Assuming constant dollars, he will have earned $3 million pre-tax in that period.

Jack earns $150,000 per year for his first five years. He then changes companies and roles and increases his pay to $180,000 per year for five years. He then changes again and earns $220,000 per year for five years before moving one last time and earning $250,000 for five years. Jack will then have earned $4 million pre-tax in constant dollars during that period.

Some will say, well, Jack takes on a lot of market risk in making those career moves. He could move to a riskier position at a company he does not know as well, or run afoul of a manager who fires him. This is all potentially true but manageable—if you work with a reputable career management firm like the Barrett Group who helps you not only discover and vet new potential employers and roles but also assures you a higher negotiated compensation package.

But what about the risk of staying put?

John in our example has penalized himself to the tune of 33%—$1 million—over the course of his career by taking the safe course.

When considering your “career assets”, which of these strategies is actually riskier?

That’s why you might want to think about your career as an asset that, unless you regularly check its market value, is effectively frozen, leaving you subject to significant opportunity costs like poor John in our example.

Additionally, many executives find that they lose motivation if they stay in the same track, the same role, the same company, and the same industry year after year, grinding away while all around them their peers explore new and more interesting paths that may yield benefits beyond the purely monetary—better work/life balance, for example, more personal satisfaction, or even the joy of “giving back,” depending on where you are in your career cycle.

The Clarity Program© is the first step in our career change program. It helps clients really take a broader look at their lives before they plunge into the change process to verify, discover, and/or validate their personal targets. Here’s what one recent client has to say about his Clarity Program© experience:

“Our sessions seemed simple at first, but they built upon each other. Towards the end, [my Clarity Coach] asked me to write about my dream job. I typed out where I wanted to live, what my office was like, and how my family fit into the picture. I’ve been through coaching and personality assessments before, but not like this. David’s [his Clarity Coach’s] insights and the simple tasks he assigned me gave me a clearer vision of myself and my goals. I felt so hopeful!” [Joel Engle, Chief Growth Officer, Read More

Clarity is indeed valuable, but not sufficient. Our clients have to put in the effort if they want to succeed and maximize their career assets.

For example:

“I worked the process and things went exactly to plan! It started with a phone call and resulted in my dream job. It really works! […] Of course, the other side of my success comes from the training I received from Lori and David [his Barrett Group Career Consultant and Clarity Coach]. It empowered me. Honestly, working with them was like taking a masters course in how to find a job. It was a lot of work, and it wasn’t without moments of doubt. But they gave me the skills and the encouragement I needed to get a C-suite position on my own. I could never thank them enough for that.” [Joel Engle, Chief Growth Officer, Read More]

And Joel is not alone. Our clients are highly active in the executive market even now in the middle of the summer because the unpublished market never sleeps. Here’s an overview of our clients’ reported interviews and landings during the first half of 2022.

CB129_Client Interviews and Landings 2022

Imagine if you could minimize the risk of taking the plunge and find that new career position that offers higher compensation, more freedom, enhanced recognition for your contributions, better quality of life, new and exciting challenges… or all of these benefits combined.

Well, now you know how to mitigate the risks of changing jobs. The Barrett Group has been helping executives make transitions for more than 30 years. Better yet, we are recognized as one of the best in the business by none other than Forbes magazine. 

So take your career out of the freezer this summer. Give us a call.

Peter Irish, CEO, The Barrett Group

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