Preparing for Unexpected Opportunities Part 4 – Decision Time!

Welcome to episode 56 of the Nerd Journey Podcast [@NerdJourney]! We’re John White (@vJourneyman) and Nick Korte (@NetworkNerd_), two VMware Solution Engineers who are hoping to bring you the IT career advice that we wish we’d been given earlier in our careers. In today’s episode we discuss how to prepare for unanticipated career opportunities, part 4, Decision Time!

Original Recording Date: 10-03-2019

Topics – Preparing for Unexpected Career Opportunities, Part 4

1:53 – A Review of the Series to Date

2:20 – Decision Time

  • An offer letter is an official document describing terms of employment (with compensation package) for the potential employee to sign.

    • Likely you do not want to make a company put this together unless you’re considering taking the offer.
    • John mentions the decision point should likely come before you receive an offer letter.
  • 4:20 Review of questions to ask yourself during the process

    • Is this opportunity interesting enough to keep pursuing?
    • Am I interested in what the company is doing / the products it has, etc.?
    • Have I become more interested as a result of going through the process?
    • If at any point during the interview process you became disinterested, politely end the process.
    • Did you rank your priorities (money, travel, flexible schedule, area, support for family life, etc.)?
      • What is most important to you that would motivate you to make a change?
      • What tradeoffs would you be willing to make?
    • Review podcasts on reasons not to pursue an opportunity
  • 11:58 The company making you an offer has to sell you on making the change. It should be a better match to your priorities than you have today.

    • Don’t forget to consider how the change will affect your family (spouse, children, etc.).
      • Nick and John share anecdotes on being in close proximity to family.
  • 16:22 Should you leverage the offer for a raise at your current company, even if you are thinking about taking the job?

    • Again, the answer is likely no.
    • If this offer has exposed gaps at your current company, ask your employer to address them without posing the threat of leaving.
    • A perception of one foot out the door could be created.
  • 18:19 What if you turn down the offer?

    • Maintain professionalism no matter what.
    • Maybe the company making the offer just cannot meet your needs.
    • The art of saying no requires practice and can be difficult.
  • 20:29 What if you take the offer?

    • How soon should you let your current employer know you plan to leave? What about navigating wait time for a background check process?
      • Ensure you capture ALL steps that need to happen before coming an employee at the new company.
        • Some companies may do a background check before an offer. Others may do it after that step.
        • Whatever notice you give to your employer needs to be after the go / no go point (all parts of process complete to be an employee at the new company).
        • Two weeks is customary notice when leaving an organization. More may be needed in certain scenarios.
        • There is a possibility your last day will be the day you give notice. It doesn’t hurt to ask the new employer if you can start early if this happens.
          • Are you financially ready for a gap in pay if that happens?
    • 28:13 Ensuring a great transition
      • Go back and listen to Episode 12 on gracefully leaving an organization for additional tips.
      • John shares a story about a colleague who helped him transition into some accounts as a SE and what he wanted a successful transition to look like when leaving VMware.
      • Make it a point to keep in touch with former colleagues.
      • Disseminating the fact that you are leaving is up to your manager.
        • Be courteous about this, but let him / her know you would like your colleagues to know before your last day.
  • Is there something we missed in this series? Please let us know by sending a Tweet or message on LinkedIn.

Contact us if you need help on the journey.

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