Job Hunting? 5 Red Flags That Tell You a Job Sucks

Little businessman looking at the city

Businessman looking at career options | Source: iStock

In the midst of a job search, it can be easy to get frustrated and take the first offer that comes your way. Maybe you’ve been laid off and desperately need to start getting a paycheck again. Perhaps you’re looking to get a pay raise and are looking to switch companies to make it happen faster. Whatever your motivation, it’s easy to fall into the trap of believing the companies have all the power. Yes, they’re ultimately the ones with jobs to offer. However, you have just as much choice in the process, and it’s important to keep an eye out for warning signs that a company might be a dud.

A promotion is great and so is advancing your career, but to make those things worth it, you also have to be at a company that’s a good fit for you and your future goals. In addition, you need to make sure that your next potential employer has a plan for long-term success. It might be difficult to know those items line up 100% before taking a job, but there are definitely warning signs out there for when a company might not be poised for long-term success. All you have to do is look for them.

Job search: Company red flags

So what are some warning signs that a potential job might not be all that it’s cracked up to be? In many cases, it begins with taking a closer look at the company itself. The Cheat Sheet talked with Jesse Siegal, vice president at The Execu|Search Group, a recruitment and workforce management firm, to get a better idea of what to watch for as you’re researching potential new jobs.

“With unemployment being as low as it is, we’re looking at this as a candidate-driven market,” Siegal said. “If they’ve got choices, they should make sure they’re making the best ones they can.” The following warning signs don’t mean you should write off a job or company immediately, but do signal that it might be wise to dig a little deeper, and see if there’s a good explanation for the lapse. If there’s not, it might serve as a reason to choose an equally tempting offer from another company. 

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