Know Your Priorities: Continue On A Strong Career Trajectory

Your career trajectory is important. So, what do you need to assess your next steps? Your priorities.

How can you be the most effective to yourself when you decide it’s time to kick the tires of a new opportunity at least?  You may wonder why you are even looking for a new opportunity.  Is this in line with your ideal career trajectory?  Was it the persuasiveness of the caller on the other end of the phone that enticed you?  Or was there a deep-seated root for the reason for accepting the call?  Really it does not matter.  What does matter is that you know why you are looking for a new position, and the “what” is almost as important as the “why.”

Answer The Question: What Are Your Priorities In Your Career Trajectory?

What does this conversation have to do with? Priorities.  What are your real priorities when looking for the next position?  The only way to know what your priorities are is to take a serious, hard look at where you are in your career trajectory.  Are you at the beginning of your career? This would dictate different reasons for you to make a move.  Or are you at the tail end of a great career and you are looking for an exit strategy?  Each stage that you find yourself in should dictate to you what your priorities are when looking at a new position.  Sometimes they may not be as obvious as they may have seemed.  For example, what you may think of as the most important fact that you are looking at when seeking a new firm may indeed not be the most important reason at all. 

There’s More Than Compensation To Consider

For example, let’s look at the idea of compensation.  When you are at the beginning of your career, it may be that you are only looking for that first big paycheck. Should you not really be examining the opportunity as to the training that you can be getting?  The firm that may not pay the most might be a better opportunity in the long run because you are going to get great training. You may indeed locate your true mentor in the business that will take you under your wings, and open doors for you faster than any other position that you may be entertaining (even though the immediate pay may be lower than a competing offer).  

It’s Time To Soar

Let’s consider another point of your career trajectory.  Are you at the stage in your career where you are sailing through?  You know where the winds of tranquility have taken you, and now it’s time to find a firm that can offer you a broader platform for you to continue on this great trip of yours. Nothing is holding you back, except that you are looking for larger waters to pursue.  In this stage, compensation is definitely most important because you have proven yourself and it’s time to be well rewarded for all that hard work.  Finding a firm that will be more entrepreneurial and let you entertain lots of new areas for you to continue to grow is important to you (as well as being well rewarded).  So, when an offer comes in, you want to make sure all those areas are nicely covered, or it does not make sense to even contemplate a move.

The Tail End In Your Career Trajectory

Or maybe your career trajectory is slowing down? Maybe you are at the tail end of your career.  You have people who are important to you on your team, and you want to create a transition package for yourself as well as knowing that your faithful colleagues are also well taken care of.  At this stage, money may not be the main motivator, but ancillary to your immediate wish.  You may realize that your focus should be on setting yourself up for an excellent exit strategy.  Immediate dollars may not be as important as future dollars when you are not working at full capacity.  All of these are just examples for you to open your mind and eyes up to look past the obvious. Really start asking yourself what your real priority is, and they may not be the ones that surface immediately.  Let us help you spot those hidden reasons as we can share the experiences of other individuals who are in the same stage of career transitions with you to help you see past the obvious. 


You don’t need a resume to chat with us! If you would like to discuss your options, please reach out for a confidential conversation at 760-477-1284 or email at [email protected]. He can also be reached on LinkedIn. Harlan publishes a blog every Thursday here. Subscribe to our monthly newsletter here, which is a compilation of our weekly blogs, so you never miss one. You can find our listing in the “supplier and services” section of the Red Book under the title of “executive recruiting.”

About Harlan Friedman, JD & Founding Member, H. Friedman Search LLC. Harlan is a thirty-year veteran Public Finance Banker turned recruiter who specializes in the placement of all levels Public Finance Bankers, Healthcare Bankers, Municipal Advisors, Compliance Officers, Issuers, and Bond Counsels.