Episode 293 Recognising the Right Time to Pivot in Your Career or Business


Discover the 7 signs it’s the right time to pivot in your career or business with host Anna Lundberg on Reimagining Success. These are the indicators to watch out for.

In this week’s episode, we’re diving into a crucial question that many of us face in our careers or businesses: when is it time to pivot? Anna unpacks this topic by revealing the seven signs that signal it might be time to rethink your career.

From recognising that you’ve stopped learning and growing, to weighing positives against negatives, and identifying the early signs of burnout, Anna provides insightful, practical advice. She also touches on the bigger picture—considering whether your values align with your company’s and exploring those burning desires for something new. Join us as we explore these seven signs and help you determine whether it’s time for a career or business pivot. Tune in and start reflecting on what success means for you at this point of your career.

00:00 Time to pivot? Signs to rethink career.

03:08 Long commute, family and health matter more.

07:55 Recognise burnout, align values, consider new path.

10:01 Seven signs it’s time to rethink career.

*Resources mentioned during the episode*
1:1 Coaching & Mentoring – If you’re looking for one-to-one support to help you achieve your specific life and business goals, Anna has a limited number of spots for individual coaching and mentoring. www.onestepoutside.com/coaching

Right time to pivot

One of the questions that came up in my community recently was, when is it time to pivot? So in your career, in your business, when is the right moment, if there is such a thing to make a change, it could be a tweak, a redirect, taking with you your experiences and skills and so on into a new area, new domain, new business model, or it could be something a bit more dramatic. There are so many things involved here in terms of fears of getting it wrong and wasting all that time, all the effort they’ve put in already and making the wrong choice. So today we’re looking at this question, when is it time to pivot in your career or in your business? And I wanted to actually go back onto a resource that I shared many years ago because I think it’s very valuable and it is quite simple, but has proven to be very useful in the past. So it’s the seven signs that it’s time to rethink your career. So that’s what I’ll go through with you today. Seven signs to rethink your career. And the first one is that you’ve stopped learning and growing. Data shows that one of the top reasons why people leave their role is that they don’t feel that they’re being allowed to use their skills and strengths, they’re not being challenged.

And lifelong learning, as if you’ve ever heard me speak on a podcast, if you know me at all, is one of my lifelong values. You know, it’s so important to me. I’m so stimulated and inspired by learning new things. I’m a bit of a geek, what can I say? But that’s what makes life interesting, right? It would be pretty boring if we were stagnant and, and just, you know, rest on our laurels, thought, yeah, well, I’m grown up now. I’m in my forties. I know everything. And so that’s the first reason, or first indication, I suppose, at least, to suggest that maybe there’s something that needs to change. Now, of course, that doesn’t mean that you have to rip up everything that you’ve done and start again, and.

But it does mean that you have that awareness that, oh, I’m not quite learning and growing as I used to, and that’s a bit of a problem for me. How can I then perhaps find new roles, projects, projects, learning opportunities in the current, you know, scope of work that I’m doing? Or is there something bigger that needs to change? So, number one is if you’ve stopped learning and growing. Number two is when the positives no longer outweigh the negatives. So I think, you know, without labouring the point, obviously the last few years of the pandemic. Pandemic have led to people rethinking this. We hear a lot about the Gen Z and generation Z, I suppose we should say, in the UK, really valuing purpose and work life balance, of course, and values in terms of sustainability and diversity and so on, over the stress and the workload and so on, but also over, interestingly, the perks of the high salary and so on. So it’s up to you what you see as positives and negatives. But of course, if you are traditionally earning a really good salary, you have the status of a great company, great job title, et cetera, and you enjoy your work and you like your colleagues and so on.

Those are incredible positives that possibly, potentially weigh very much in the favour of staying in that organisation. Over. Oh, yeah, the commute was a bit tough. You know, I missed a few of the kids things in the evenings and I’m quite tired. And whatever it is that may well have changed, whether as a result of the pandemic or just a bit of a wake up call, and perhaps your personal priorities, your health, your family, have become more important. Or at least your awareness of their importance has increased. In which case, you know, there’s a point at which that salary and so on doesn’t weigh more importantly on the scales versus your family, your happiness and so on. Or, you know, you’re in a job that’s sort of, okay, it’s not my dream job, but it pays the bills and it’s good enough.

Maybe that’s not good enough anymore. So when the positives no longer outweigh the negatives that you’re experiencing, that’s a moment when you might want to redress that balance and increase the positives over the negatives to get that balance right again. The next one is a bit linked to this. When everything is fine, when it’s like, ugh, yeah, work. Poof. I’ve sometimes mentioned that on my Facebook, which I rarely use now, even for work, really. But my Facebook memories always come up saying, oh, TGIF, thank goodness it’s Friday. Hooray.

Weekend. And then, ugh, Monday blues. And it’s this monotonous, tragic cycle that goes through of accounting the minutes to the end of the day, the days to the weekend. And you know what? It’s okay. I think this was like a very misleading view of how things were going because I really loved the work. I was doing. And I was having a lot of fun, but that was just part of kind of the social norm of going like, ugh, it’s the Monday and ugh, it’s the weekend, but everything’s fine, right? You’re enjoying it. Yeah.

It’s a good job. You’re earning a good salary. Is that enough? You know, totally up to us how ambitious we are in terms of what we can achieve. I happen to perhaps you’d say naively, but certainly optimistically believe that we can do work that we love and have flexibility and the money we want to earn. So if that’s your belief as well, maybe you want to raise the bar a little as to what you can achieve in those terms. Looking at a broader definition of success, as always, than just looking at salary increases and so on. And fourth sign is, I’ve almost mentioned it already as well, is when you’re living for the weekends. So if you’re really just counting the minutes until the end of the day.

I had friends working in banking who used to be like that. Hopefully they found fulfilment now after all these years and, but really living for the evening, for the weekend, for that holiday, you know, I so look forward to holidays, of course, although they’re of course different now with kids and so on. It’s super sunny here. We’re going to have an amazing week and I love that. But I also love the work and I’m excited to get out of bed in the morning to do my work. I’m excited on Monday morning to get going. I have ideas. I want to scribble on my iPad and my whiteboard and talk to people, and that’s really exciting.

So if I get to the point in my business where I’m going, ugh, this is such hard work and I’m not getting the reward I want. We talked about that last week. When you’re feeling frustrated that you’re not seeing the results, you know, that’s then a sign that it’s time to reconsider the effort you’re putting in. Is it really worth it? Is that how you want to live your life? There are so many stats. I’m getting bombarded on Instagram now with a poster that has the 4000 weeks, which is the average number of weeks you’re going to live in your life, and then every week you can kind of cross one off. Very morbidly, I think it says at the top, you’re going to die, which is an important reminder, but there you go. So if you’re living for the weekends, you know, the days are long and the years are short, as they say. My daughter’s turned five, my son will turn four.

You know, the years pass more quickly than you realise. So if you are just, you know, wishing them away, and that’s maybe a moment to reconsider. Next one. You’re getting dangerously close to burnout, if you are, and it’s so hard to pick up on these signs early, but if you’re feeling just exhausted, I’ve had phases like that, mentally, physically drained, you know, it’s really hard to get out of bed. You just feel a bit indifferent and not excited, not motivated, you’re exhausted, you want to cancel your plans, you don’t even want to do fun things and so on. Obviously there’s a fine line between stress, burnout, more serious mental health, depression and so on. Only you know yourself and try to be honest with yourself, if you can tell, oh, I’m really teetering on the edge right now, there’s just too much. Then that’s a moment that I’d urge you to consider.

Okay, what can I do? How can I take care of myself immediately? And what shifts might I need to make in the longer term? So if you’re getting dangerously close to burnout, obviously that’s a big, big red flag that you need to change something next. It’s a bigger sort of more philosophical one. But if your values are misaligned with the companies, so if that mission, that purpose of the company is not in alignment with your own beliefs and values, it could be in an individual manager or, you know, the immediate culture of your team. Unfortunately, I have a colleague client whose senior management are just not the right, I want to say calibre, but they’re not where they should be in terms of management and ethics and so on. So that’s really just something that isn’t sustainable longer term for you individually, but also, you know, it just doesn’t sit well and it will, you know, wear you down over time. So if your values are misaligned with the company’s values, your manager’s values, the team way of doing things, that’s again a warning flag that maybe you want to make a change and then finally a positive one. But if you have a burning desire to do something else, if you’ve always dreamed of being entrepreneurial or speaking on stages or travelling, doing this or working in that sector, whatever, if not now, then when? So while I, you know, don’t hold me accountable, if you now quit your job and go to be a teacher in Kenya or something, or become a dancer in, I don’t know, Malaysia. I’m just pulling out random creative jobs and impactful jobs and places to go and so on.

But if you have always wanted to do something, then why not give it a go? You know, in a small step, a small experiment. It doesn’t have to be a huge shift yet. But as we’ll look at, I think it’s next week. Yeah. When we’re looking at how to make good career decisions, I really urge you to be super optimistic and almost naive over the long term. And then you can be pragmatic and practical in the short term. So, you know, I’m not saying quit your job today to make this change. And that goes for all of these seven signs.

But what I am saying is that it’s a little flag. A little, at least, amber flag. It’s not a red flag to say, hmm, something maybe needs to change. So, to recap, seven signs that it’s time to rethink your career. Time to re, or rather pivot in your career or business. When you’ve stopped learning and growing, when the positives no longer outweigh the negatives, when everything is just fine, when you live for the weekends, you’re getting dangerously close to burnout, your values are misaligned with the companies, and you have a burning desire to do something else. Now, obviously, if you tick all of those seven, then I would strongly urge you to make a change. But if any of those resonate, you know, take some time to reflect.

There are lots of episodes on this podcast, and there will be more around how you can go about redefining success. And next week, as I said, will be about making good career decisions. So I’ll do my best to answer that eternal question. But I hope you found this useful. Let me know if any of those resonated. Obviously, I’m here to help if you do want my support. And best of luck with this next phase of your business, whatever that looks like for you. See you next week.


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If you’re looking for one-to-one support to help you achieve your specific life and business goals, Anna has a limited number of spots for individual coaching and mentoring.


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