When considering a possible internal or external move it’s important to make sure you are getting yourself into the right situation. Is this role going to be a step in the right direction toward what you want to achieve in your career? Here are some tips to help with the evaluation process.
1. Look at Past Employees
One of the best features LinkedIn offers is the "past companies" function. Check out the bottom of this post for step by step instructions on where to find this. It will let you see who was in similar roles to the one you are considering and where they are now. There are of course many reasons people change jobs, however this may give you some valuable insight. Sometimes a pattern is very apparent and it may be one you want to avoid. Or, you might see that after a few successful years people were able to take big jumps forward. Something like this could make a perceived lateral move worth it.
2. Look at Current Employees
Again, on Linkedin look at the people in the roles on both sides of the one you are going for (Find out the job titles of the positions above and below the role when you ask your prospective manager questions about the department you are joining). This will give you a great view into internal promotions and the culture of growing one's employees. This can often be a better lens than sites where employees review their employers. This is because most professionals use Linkedin and update it with promotions, while employer review sites are used by a smaller sample size and often highlight the bad versus the good.
3. Ask Someone in Your Network You Trust
Leave money out of the conversation and ask these 2 easy questions:
- Here are my responsibilities now and here is what they will be. Which seem greater?
- Have you ever heard of this company and what are your thoughts? Brands carry weight that you may not have expected.
Finally you probably already do these but if not, give them a try.
- Ask everyone in the hiring process about the opportunity for career progression. This may seem like an obvious item, but if you get different answers it should put up a red flag. Even if the person in interview loop is from a different area of the business, it will help paint a picture of internal promotions across the company. Plus if they have examples in your prospective department, it speaks to both the promotion of employees and the celebration of the event.
- Value opinions but create your own. Ask your self - If this was not me, what would I tell a close friend?
Steps to pull up a list of a company’s past employees on Linkedin:
- Go to the company’s Linkedin page
- Click “see all employees” just below the company name and info.
- On the right side of the screen, check the company name box under “past companies”
- Uncheck the company name box under “current companies”