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Is it Time to Leave Your Current Employer?

June 7, 2008
by Tim Tolan
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Many of us wake up and wonder what it would be like to find a new pond to fish in. Is it time to look elsewhere? If you are miserable in your current role – maybe it's time to start a self evaluation process to see if you should consider finding greener pastures. Yes, I’m talking to you. You know you have thought about it! Don’t worry - it’s quite normal.

So how do you move from wondering what it would be like to become the new CIO for another healthcare organization OR perhaps to make the jump to the vendor side? Where do you start? You should start with a personal inventory of what you love about your current role and what you really hate. It’s actually quite therapeutic!

Make a list of key drivers that would make you wake up each day, and once again look forward to starting your work day. Be honest with yourself! After all, it’s not always about the money. Studies show that compensation is lower on the list of reasons that employees change jobs and exit stage right.

Write down a list of all of the things you would like to accomplish in your career, the ideal boss you would like to work for, new skills you would like to learn, the place/location where you would like to live and finally ….make sure you identify the ideal organizational culture you would love to be a part of. You will be surprised at what this exercise will do for you.

Please, please, please…make sure you do this exercise with pencil and paper – not on an Excel spreadsheet. Writing it down on paper will give you the clarity you need to find out if it’s time to make the move. On the other hand, you may learn that you really enjoy your current role and this exercise should lead you to take action to make some changes and make your current situation even better!



This was a timeless post on your part. One of many!

After our dinner at HIMSS-2009, I went back to find your 3 questions. They're in this post, but not as instrumental as I'd like. (See my post "Building a Better World" to see where I'm coming from. Specifically, the Inside/Outside strategy model.)

I'd love it if you have thoughts that pull this together.

Tim. These posts, I believe, are so very helpful to our readers. No one should toil in an environment where they are either unappreciated or unchallenged (both equally depressing). This life is too short to waste time. The greatest goal should be to work in an environment where all of one's strengths are brought to bear. Your exercise should help people determine if they are currently in such a place.