Just a couple of generations ago, it was generally expected that you would stay with one (maybe two) companies over the course of your professional career. But things are changing. Many employers now expect to see more varied resumes which include a number of company names, and even different industries.
Job hopping can definitely be a strength – but there are things that you should keep in mind along the way.
Prioritize Experience Over Duration
A lot of people worry about how much time they need to spend in a position for it to “look good enough,” before they can start looking for another. In reality, this is not something that you need to be overly concerned with. Sure, if you have not held a job for more than six months over the past three years, you should probably be prepared to address this with HR departments. Otherwise, remember that the skills and experience that you gain from a position tends to be more important than the actual number of months on the job.
Grow Your Professional Network
This can be one of the greatest benefits of job-hopping. Generally speaking, you will meet a lot more people in your industry if you move between jobs than if you were to stay in the same position. Take advantage of this. Stay in touch with contacts on a regular basis and let them know what direction you are taking in your career. But remember that leaving a position for a new one – especially after a relatively short period of time or for a competitive organization – can be a little touchy. Do your best to keep things professional and cordial.
Tailor Your Resume
One of the main reasons for job-hopping is to take advantage of the opportunity and grow your experience. To best do this, you need to be updating your resume along the way. If you have a lot of positions listed on your resume, take the time to consider what was the greatest experience or most important learning from each one. Make sure you also consider who could be a good reference or speak to your performance from each position.
Only Make Strategic Moves
Yes, job-hopping can be incredibly beneficial to your career. It can help you gain experience and move up the ladder quicker than you would have otherwise. But that does not mean that you should jump at every opportunity in front of you. Consider what your professional goals are. Where do you want to be in six months? What about in five years? Each new position should move you forward in that direction. If not, you may want to reconsider why you are moving around so frequently.