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Career Development

The Dark Reality Behind Being “Grateful” To Have A Job

General Assembly
November 15, 2022

Thanksgiving is the time of year when gratitude and appreciation are at an all-time high. During this season, some companies extend paid time off to employees, donate to charities for social good, distribute employee bonuses, and much more. Then there are the “others” who only oblige to the federal holiday with no paid time off or will pay a premium to employees who work on holidays. 

Additionally, with a global recession on the horizon, taking a career risk is more daunting than before. According to the Trading Economics Report, US-based companies cut over 29k jobs from their September 2022 payroll alone. Thus, most of us are just grateful to have a job these days. 

But why settle? If the last three years have taught us anything, it’s that life is short and anything can happen. You should be working at a job you love, period. But during such economic uncertainty, many overlook the maltreatment of our boss and the lack of benefits within the work environment because a check or direct deposit is still being received.

According to Gallup’s recent State of the Global Workplace: 2022 report, workers are experiencing staggering levels of workplace disengagement, unhappiness, and dissatisfaction, with 60% reporting being emotionally detached at work and 19% being miserable.

Albeit, being just “grateful” to have a job accelerates the stagnation of professional development and hinders your future career growth opportunities. But you can do more than that. So this holiday season, take the risk to return the gratitude and appreciation at a new job in tech with better benefits and pay that you will genuinely love. 

5 warning signs that you’re just “grateful” in your current job

In the U.S. alone, 50% of workers report feeling stressed at their jobs on a daily basis. Unfortunately, most workers overlook this stress and tolerate it simply because they are just “grateful” to have a job in today’s market. However, the dark truth behind you not being truly happy at your job will come out in the long run. Here are five warning signs: you’re settling for less than you deserve.

1. Maybe I’m just not good enough

Self-doubt is one of the main reasons people don’t go after what they can achieve. If you find yourself constantly saying, “maybe I’m just not good enough,” it’s a sure sign you are delaying your career change and just settling at your current job. 

It’s estimated that over 70% of people experience imposter syndrome at some point throughout their careers. Although it’s completely normal to experience imposter syndrome, especially when going through a career change, you shouldn’t let it jeopardize your ability to succeed in your new job. 

“I think as long as the feeling of not being good enough doesn’t paralyze you. I think it’s a valid feeling because you might not just be good enough yet. We’re still all learning. I’m still constantly trying to improve myself as a career changer, joining a new position that, at times, can be really challenging. But it’s critical you go through the motion of not being good enough and go for it anyways,” explained Quentin Caron, Product Designer at Thunkable. 

2. My job isn’t so bad

If you find yourself making a pros and cons list about why you should stay at your job, it’s a sure sign that you are just settling and unhappy. You may even find yourself unable to list any pros for your current job apart from getting a steady paycheck. 

However, your salary should not be the only defining factor to stay in your job. Your salary is a fundamental right to you performing a job. It should be considered something other than something exceptional. Things that you should be looking out for in a new career that will make a positive impact on your life include: 

  • Generous or unlimited paid time off
  • Paid sick days
  • Fully remote working policy
  • Flexible work days
  • 4-day work weeks
  • Benefits like health insurance, dental, and vision
  • Great bonus package
  • Great company culture
  • Mental health days

3. You’re constantly proving to your boss that you deserve to be here

Do you feel guilty taking paid time off or a sick day because you fear your commitment to the team and company will be questioned? If you are experiencing this, it’s a huge red flag. 

People who experience this tend to be overworked, stressed out, and miserable at their job. If your boss or manager is making you feel like you constantly need to do more to prove yourself, then it’s time to call it quits

Your manager’s responsibility is to make sure you are successful in the role that you have been hired in. On a weekly or monthly basis, they should give you constructive feedback on your progress, talk about career progression, and let you know of resources you can utilize to improve your career. If your current boss or manager is not doing this, it’s time to start looking for something better. You deserve more than that. 

4. Some call it the “dream” company

Do you find yourself working at an envy-worthy job? Every time you meet up with your friends or family, you find that you are working at a company others have on their wish list. So naturally, this can bring up some feelings of being “ungrateful” for being unhappy at your job. 

However, you shouldn’t allow these feelings to blur the lines between you being miserable at your job. Just because the company you work at is well known and seems like an amazing opportunity to people on the outside, you shouldn’t feel bad about not being content. 

At the end of the day, we should be thankful for every job opportunity. But if the fire is no longer burning, and you are at your wit’s end, you need to break up with your current toxic relationship and find a new career you will be head over heels for. 

5. I’m just going to wait it out and see

Patience is a virtue but waiting it out after already putting in hard work at your current job is not a strategy you should continue. If your hard work goes unnoticed, and you’ve reached the “I just have to take whatever I can get” mindset, it’s a sure sign you’re settling. 

More than likely, you are afraid to take the first step towards a carer change, and you’re just holding on to what’s comfortable. You don’t have to quit your job immediately. Instead, look around and figure out what you’d love to do. 

Make an action list of the things you need to help get you there. This might include signing up for a bootcamp or immersive to upskill, updating your LinkedIn profile and your resume to highlight your transferable skills, or networking to build connections in your new career. Whatever it may take, start today. 

If you’re done being grateful, here are 4 jobs to explore

When taking the leap into tech, it’s important to consider what career path will best suit you. 

The tech industry offers endless opportunities, and the continued growth in this sector is projected only to keep increasing. According to Gartner’s recent report, worldwide tech market spending is projected to total $4.6 trillion in 2023, despite the current market conditions. 

To help you on your hunt for the tech job of your dreams, we’ve identified the most popular and best-paid tech jobs for 2022 and 2023. 

  1. Software Engineer 

According to a recent report by Hired, the demand for software engineers continues to accelerate as the competition to attract and retain top tech talent heats up. Software engineers have received twice the average amount of interview requests in 2022 than in 2021. 

What they do: When talking about the responsibilities of a software engineer, it really depends on the type of software engineering you are after. There are many different specializations of software engineers, including: 

  • Full Stack Engineer
  • Backend Engineer
  • Frontend Engineer
  • Data Engineer
  • Security Engineer

Depending on the role, your daily responsibilities will vary. However, in a nutshell, software engineers are responsible for executing a full lifecycle software development, writing efficient code using programming languages like Java, Ruby, Rails, .NET, and C++, and producing specifications to determine operational feasibility. 

Average Salary: $114,000 per year (Glassdoor)

  1. Data Analyst

Data Analysts are one of the most in-demand talents in tech. According to Sigma, 63% of companies report improved efficiency, and 57% say more effective decision-making are the top two benefits of effective data analytics.

What they do: Daily, data analysts analyze raw data samples to get better insights and information. As well as developing and implementing databases and other strategies that optimize statistical efficiency and quality for the company. Data analysts work with statistical packages/software like SQL, SPSS, and programming languages like XML, Javascript, or ETL frameworks. 

Average Salary: $72,000 per year (Glassdoor)

  1. UX (user experience) Designer 

The UX designer field has been expected to grow by 27% in 2022 alone. UX designers have become highly sought after because of their ability to bridge critical thinking, design, and creative skills with technology. 

What they do: Some of the main responsibilities of a UX designer include consulting with customers and any other relevant stakeholders to understand the project goals, creating product prototypes, conducting usability testing, creating wireframes, storyboards, sitemaps, and screen flows. 

Average Salary: $101,000 per year (Glassdoor)

  1. Data Scientist

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of jobs requiring data science skills is expected to grow by 27.9% by 2026. Data scientists are a hot commodity in the tech world. With the number of data doubling at variable speeds each year, and companies adopting a digital remote business structure, it’s not surprising that data science professionals are in such high demand. 

What they do: On a high-level overview, data scientists are responsible for identifying relevant data sources and patterns for companies to optimize long-term strategic business decisions. As well as source missing data, building predictive models, building machine learning algorithms, and developing, implementing, and maintaining databases. Data scientists need to be able to work with programming languages such as Python, Perl, C/C++, SQL, and Java. 

Average Salary: $121,000 per year (Glassdoor)

Don’t just settle you can do better

To wrap up, remember that being just “grateful” to have a job isn’t enough to stay in that career for the long term. You deserve a career that you are proud of and truly love. The tech industry is a versatile field that offers something for everyone. 

With our Career Change Guide, we’ve broken down your journey to tech into six parts to help you take a confident leap of faith into a tech career. Download the “Career Changer’s Guide to Doing Something Different” ebook for a step-by-step plan.


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