“Why are you still working there? Three years is already a long time.”
I’ve been asked several versions of that question. I never once thought it was weird to want to stay in a company for three years—I mean, there are literally people who stay in one place for 10+ years. At the same time, I do think about those questions and ask myself the same thing.
Before any of my bosses or HR officers ask—no, I’m not passing a resignation letter right after I publish this article.
In January, it will be my fourth year of working with Preen.ph. It’s both an accomplishment and a surprise. I say the latter because I only stayed in my first job after six months and I didn’t think I’d last a year as a writer for a lifestyle-slash-feminist publication. But here I am.
When people ask why I stay, the usual answer I give is because I love what I’m doing at the moment. It’s cheesy, but it’s the truth. One of the reasons I didn’t stay in my first job was because I knew news writing and covering dengue cases—among other things I was asked to cover—wasn’t for me. I knew that writing lifestyle stories piqued my interest and I’m fortunate enough to that in Preen.ph, where I also got to learn about feminism and other progressive topics in the process. (It’s quite shocking how little I knew back then; I’m learning until now.)
I understand why some people ask why I’m staying in the same company. A Deloitte survey in 2018 found that 43 percent of millennials plan to leave their current jobs after two years of working; only 28 percent said they plan to stay beyond five years. The survey also found that millennials are looking for “a business that improves society.” It’s safe to say I’m in the middle of both demographics.
Many baby boomers have also called millennials “lazy and entitled” for allegedly demanding more than actually working for them. As an Inc. article noted, if a millennial wasn’t willing to sacrifice enough, they don’t deserve success in the eyes of the older generation. The reality is that it isn’t wrong to want something better for yourself while you’re young.
At the same time, it’s also not wrong to want to stay in one place if you still feel like you’re growing in the field you’re in.
This then begs the question: Is it possible for me to leave my current job if there are opportunities for growth outside of it? Yes—why not? If there’s anything I learned from current and former colleagues, it’s that you shouldn’t close your door to new opportunities.
If you ask me when I plan to leave, I can’t answer that. Who knows? Maybe I’ll go beyond the five-year mark in this company.
For now, I’d rather focus on what I’ve learned so far and keep doing my best as I approach another year of working here. When the time does come for me to leave this job, I just hope I made a great choice.