We’ve discussed in a previous blog post why you should never “burn bridges” in your career. You never know when something that you’ve said or done (or not done) will come back to hurt you at a later date. It happens more frequently than anybody imagines, and people almost always think that it won’t happen to them . . . until it does.
Times are good right now for job seekers and candidates in the employment marketplace. That’s because the unemployment rate is historically low, employers are willing and motivated to hire, and top talent is in short supply. As a result, this is a candidates’ market. As we’ve discussed before in this blog, a candidates’ market means two main things:
- There are more employment opportunities available for all job seekers and candidates.
- The best candidates have access to the most employment opportunities and the best opportunities.
In other words, candidates—especially top candidates—are “in the driver’s seat.” They have leverage during their job search and during negotiations with employers. They’re in a better position to demand certain things, such as a higher starting salary, more perks, or a flexible working schedule.
While this is fantastic news for job seekers and candidates, there is a potential downside to it all, one that is not immediately evident.
That downside is this: more opportunities also means more chances to “burn bridges.”
And why is that? Because it’s only human nature to take advantage of leverage to an unacceptable degree when you have access to that leverage. To put it another way, it’s human nature to abuse a position of power once you are in that position of power.
Since top candidates have leverage and are in a position of power in this current market, they’re more tempted to abuse that leverage and that power. And as human beings, they sometimes fall prey to that temptation. As we’ve addressed previously, that means the following, among other things:
- Not showing up for a scheduled phone screening
- Not showing up for a scheduled face-to-face interview
- Accepting an offer of employment, only to accept another offer that you receive shortly thereafter
- Accepting an offer of employment, but then accepting a counter-offer from your current employer
- Accepting an offer of employment, but then not showing up for your first day of work . . . or ever
This is why it’s important to resist temptation in this current market. Instead, it’s even more crucial to act with integrity during your job search and during any hiring process of which you are a part. Yes, you should strive to take advantage of the leverage that the current market is offering. However, you should NOT abuse that leverage.
Abusing leverage and power might benefit you in the short term, but only in the very short term. It will not benefit you in the long run—and your career is all about the long run. Invest in the future of your career by not “burning bridges” and by acting with 100% integrity every step of the way.
The Doepker Group has experience placing candidates in the Information Technology and Engineering industries, and we can place you, as well.