by , Career Success, No Comments

May 16

How sunk costs apply to your career

by Mandy, Career Success, No Comments

May 16

Last week a man contacted me about my resume services. When I sent a follow-up e-mail to ask if he wanted to chat he replied, “I don’t know what to do. I have a lot of time invested in this company now and I’m still scratching my head on what I should do.”

Immediately the concept of sunk costs came to mind – one of those things I learned in business school and didn’t realize applied to careers. My reply:

“It’s hard to think of it this way, but the time you’ve already invested in the company is a sunk cost – you can’t get it back no matter how you proceed. As such it shouldn’t be a consideration in your decision about moving forward. Things like benefits, bonuses, tenure – those could all be considerations. But the amount of time invested alone shouldn’t.  Also to consider is that the best time to get a resume is when you don’t need it. Stay where you are, get the resume, and job hunt as an employed person. It’s a much better position to be in.”

His response? “Man you are so right and let’s do talk sometime next week.”

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