Author Topic: career change moving from the top to the bottom. Would you do it?  (Read 5397 times)

strider3700

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I'm at the top in my company. It's a small under 10 person business.  There are no more positions for me to move up into short of buying the company which I won't be doing.  I get a decent wage slightly higher then most in my town but I get 1/2 what I would if I lived elsewhere.   The job is very stressful,  It's very challenging and not to toot my own horn but there isn't a lot of people that can do my job just walking around out there desperate for work.  It's  specialized knowledge and years of experience.  Most of us have been with the company for over a decade.   I work a lot of overtime but they don't pay time and a half.  They also don't pay it out instead we're to take time off later.  Having said that actually getting stretches of time off is hard so I have lots of banked time that I can't access.    The company is on shaky financial territory and I have no idea if they'll be around another 5 years.  Hell I have no idea if they won't decide enough is enough and close the doors in 6 months.  We've been in what the industry calls a death march for almost a year now and it won't be ending any time soon.  There are no benefits, no pension.   There are some perks though.  I get to work from home which means I can be here when my kids are off. 

I've been asked by someone if I'd like to apply for a position at their company.  This would be in a different field. It would be entry level so instant 30% paycut.  But they'll spend a lot on training.  The position is union. Their are benefits, and a pension and a ton of other things as this is a very large and established corporation.   If you live in my part of the country it's impossible for you to not know it and very likely you are or have been a customer.     I don't have exact details on how the pay works out but speaking with someone else in the position  It sounds like in 5 years of the automatic raises I'd be back at my current wage.    With a company like this also I could theoretically move up internally via training.   I wouldn't work from home and there is a commute of roughly 30 minutes but it's a company vehicle and gas card.

If I was to go back in time numerous decades to when I first exited highschool  this would have been a dream position to get in, work your 30 years and exit likely with a massive pension. Theoretically I could still do 30 years with a company.  Not that I want to.   

So I'm wondering what the MMM community thinks.     income hit for more stability and larger upside down the road  or flatlined higher income in a shaky situation?

gimp

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Re: career change moving from the top to the bottom. Would you do it?
« Reply #1 on: July 11, 2014, 11:50:48 AM »
Your current company is doing illegal things and is slowly imploding. I'd leave, if I were you. Granted, I'd also try to move elsewhere to double your current salary...

YK-Phil

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Re: career change moving from the top to the bottom. Would you do it?
« Reply #2 on: July 11, 2014, 11:58:08 AM »
Considering the uncertainty of your current job, versus the possible long-term advantages of the other position you've been offered coupled with the fact that there are not too many decently paid jobs on Vancouver Island these days, I'd make the move even if it meant less money at least in the short term. Indeed, I went from a very stressful high level job with a high 6-figure salary to a  mid-$20K job with little stress and a lot of fun, and never regretted my move. I went back to my old career recently, but the motivation was not money. Mind you, I am almost 57 and FI so my priorities with respect to career, and my financial needs, are vastly different than those of a younger person.

This being said, my wife and I are planning a move to Gabriola Island within a year or two. My plan is to kick back and relax, do some sailing and gardening, a bit of travel, and not much more. My wife being much younger, wants to stay in the workforce for another 5-8 years, perhaps as a caregiver or helper for older folks, pet-sitting, or something else stress-free. She is not career-minded, and money is not a priority, so even working minimum wage for a local coffee shop would suit her fine. If you have any insights about living and working on Vancouver Island, I would appreciate your thoughts.

Snow White

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Re: career change moving from the top to the bottom. Would you do it?
« Reply #3 on: July 11, 2014, 12:17:15 PM »
I'd make the move as you have this appealing opportunity now and you might not later when/if your company implodes. 

strider3700

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Re: career change moving from the top to the bottom. Would you do it?
« Reply #4 on: July 11, 2014, 12:59:26 PM »
Your current company is doing illegal things and is slowly imploding. I'd leave, if I were you. Granted, I'd also try to move elsewhere to double your current salary...

I'm in IT and these positions are classified differently so it's not illegal to work us as slaves.   They changed the laws specifically to allow it  a little over 10 years ago. 

DoubleDown

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Re: career change moving from the top to the bottom. Would you do it?
« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2014, 01:16:53 PM »
How close are you to FI? Unless you're really close (say, less than one year), I'd also consider taking the other position, as well as exploring other opportunities or careers that might not result in as drastic a pay cut.

strider3700

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Re: career change moving from the top to the bottom. Would you do it?
« Reply #6 on: July 11, 2014, 01:30:33 PM »
at current savings rates. 7-10 years to FI assuming nothing comes up.

Numbers Man

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Re: career change moving from the top to the bottom. Would you do it?
« Reply #7 on: July 11, 2014, 01:43:15 PM »
Taking two steps backward to go forward three steps makes sense. With that being said, if you have such a special skill set, then why can't you change jobs with a high salary?

Jack

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Re: career change moving from the top to the bottom. Would you do it?
« Reply #8 on: July 11, 2014, 01:43:28 PM »
I work a lot of overtime but they don't pay time and a half.  They also don't pay it out instead we're to take time off later.  Having said that actually getting stretches of time off is hard so I have lots of banked time that I can't access.    The company is on shaky financial territory and I have no idea if they'll be around another 5 years.  Hell I have no idea if they won't decide enough is enough and close the doors in 6 months.

Quit now and tell them you want your back pay in cash. Otherwise you're at very real risk of losing it entirely. You want to get paid before bankruptcy court lets them weasel out of it.

If there aren't a lot of people who could come replace you, it means your skills should be in demand at your employer's competitor too. Look for a higher-paying job there.

strider3700

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Re: career change moving from the top to the bottom. Would you do it?
« Reply #9 on: July 11, 2014, 01:50:32 PM »
my specialization has less to do with applicable skills to competitors so much as knowledge of inhouse systems.  They run some very obscure weird crap that takes forever to learn and almost noone else uses.   Replacing me will be very hard but not a lot of others want that specific knowledge.     Also I'm not moving.  We're very much rooted here so options in my current field are limited.

I'll start taking that owed time in the next couple of weeks.  I'm also getting antsy about having a few weeks of off the books overtime piled up.

frugaliknowit

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Re: career change moving from the top to the bottom. Would you do it?
« Reply #10 on: July 11, 2014, 01:56:00 PM »
Reality check (I only say this because I've applied for so many jobs):  You are only applying.  You can always turn down an offer or negotiate a better one...

Go ahead and apply.  You can always turn it down.  The process, even if you are successful, usually takes a long time.  Good luck!

Trudie

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Re: career change moving from the top to the bottom. Would you do it?
« Reply #11 on: July 11, 2014, 02:56:40 PM »
Apply for the new job.

ShortInSeattle

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Re: career change moving from the top to the bottom. Would you do it?
« Reply #12 on: July 11, 2014, 04:17:34 PM »
Keep in mind that a fat pension plan won't do you any good if you don't plan to work enough years to vest in it.

That being said, it sounds like a job search would be prudent.  Also look at opportunities closer to home.

deborah

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Re: career change moving from the top to the bottom. Would you do it?
« Reply #13 on: July 11, 2014, 04:27:10 PM »
You sound like what we used to call the "bleeding end" (as against the "bleeding edge") of computing. Often people in that position don't get a chance to reskill in current technology, and end up having nowhere to go. Because of this, I think this would be a marvelous opportunity for you. Go to the interview. See whether it will be OK. At worst, if you stay there for a year, you will have more current skills, and be more able to find work in other places.

ZiziPB

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Re: career change moving from the top to the bottom. Would you do it?
« Reply #14 on: July 11, 2014, 05:52:25 PM »
Sounds like the current job is very close to the dead end.  The new opportunity has growth and learning potential plus good benefits which will probably make up for the difference in salary.  Definitely go for it!

strider3700

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Re: career change moving from the top to the bottom. Would you do it?
« Reply #15 on: July 14, 2014, 02:55:26 PM »
thanks all.  Application sent.  It was good to update the resume even if I don't get it.