When you are looking for a job, there are several factors you need to consider besides the salary. Some of the things you want to look at is your future, potential growth with the company, the culture of the company/workplace, your level of responsibility, and the compensation perks (how many vacation/sick days will you get, what’s the holiday schedule like, will you get bonuses, etc.).
Your salary should not be the sole focus when choosing a new career. I believe that if the job has all of the factors that you desire in a new career, but it pays less than you make now, you should take time out to properly weigh out your options so that you can make the best decision.
Sometimes taking a pay cut can be worth it because its benefits could yield amazing results for you.
Here are 4 times when taking a pay cut isn’t as crazy as it sounds.
1. If You’re Making a Career Change
One of the big reasons to consider taking a pay cut is if you are switching industries. If you have zero experience in the industry you wish to work in, it’s unlikely that you’ll receive top pay or even pay that’s similar to what you make now. Nonetheless, if switching industries will make you happy and will put you in a position to do work that you truly love, a slight pay decrease just may be worth it.
2. If You Desire Work-Life Balance
In a survey by the talent acquisition and career development firm Mom Corps, it was found that 45% of working adults are willing to give up some percentage of their salary to have a more flexible schedule and life outside of their 9-5.
Let’s talk about this.
If you were given the chance to work from home on Fridays (or be off on Fridays), but would receive a slight pay cut, would you do it?
I definitely would (if I could afford the pay cut of course). For me, happiness and a peace of mind is everything, and I’ve been guilty of spending too much time at work and not enough time with family, friends, and myself. The work/life balance struggle is real, and I know less time in the office could help me balance my life outside of the 9-5.
3. When you’ve lost yourself and need to find happiness
A few years ago I was so unhappy with the job that I was currently at, and was having trouble finding a new job that would compliment my salary. I would interview with places that seemed cool, but sadly didn’t pay as well. In the end, it had gotten to a point to where I absolutely hated going to sleep because I knew that when I would wake up, I would have to go to work. I knew at that moment, something had to change. Not only was I unhappy, but I was bitter AF and my negative attitude began to show to everyone. I eventually found a company that I really loved and was offered the job. The only bad side to this was the job paid less than what I was making. I decided to go ahead and take the job – pay cut and all – because I knew I needed to be somewhere that made me happy. Needless to say, it was the best decision I’ve made.
4. When You Are On A Journey To Be Your Own Boss
As sexy as entrepreneurship appears to be, what they don’t tell you is that being an entrepreneur doesn’t always make you the amount of money you desire to make (at least in the beginning). Choosing to be self-employed comes with a risk, and this risk could include taking reduced pay while you get your company off the ground. Nonetheless, sometimes taking the pay cut will be worth it. You’ll have more time to build your business, and will be able to make it your main focus.
If You Do Take the Pay Cut, Make Sure You’re Prepared
At the end of the day, taking a pay cut has its benefits (depending on the reason why you are doing it). But before you take a chop at your paycheck, take a close look at your personal finances and budget. You need to make sure you’ll still be able to eat, keep the lights on, and take care of yourself with the pay cut.
Next, remember that if you do take a pay cut, you will probably need to adjust your budget. Instead of going to brunch every Sunday, maybe you’ll have to go every other Sunday or once a month so that you can still live comfortably and responsibly.