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Money isn't everything

Jo Miller -- Money isn't everything? Believe it or not, there are legitimate reasons why some people take lower paying jobs. Check out this Q&A for one example.

Q: After nearly eight months of searching, I am finally in the running for a new job. I would be taking several steps backward in my career path, a 40% pay cut, and a promotion would not be possible for at least one year. Since I've been out of work so long, not accepting it is not an option, and their salary cap is bedrock firm. How would I spin this to a future employer? All I can do is tell the truth, but would most employers look at this step back as a prudent choice in a horrible job market, or would they disregard my previous, higher level experience? I've worked too hard for too long to get where I am. My gut, and usually wrong, reaction to situations like that is to be totally honest.

A: Aha -- I agree -- definitely tell the truth, and don't avoid the topic either. You need some creative answers to that question "why did you take the job?" Hardly anyone in their right mind ever answers "for the money."

There are legitimate reasons why some people take lower paying jobs: a better lifestyle, more humane hours, flexibility, to work with more interesting people, to acquire new skills, or to change career or industry.

Does the job fit any of those scenarios? Is there a different skill or responsibility you would be taking on that you can highlight? For example, "I promised myself that my next career move would include the opportunity to learn about marketing."

(c) 2002

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