Post # 1
I currently work as an IT Project Manager–I travel 2-3 times per month (usually leave on a Monday and come home on a Thursday night) and I work between 50-65 hours a week on average. I’m getting tired of all the travel, hours and stress and recently got a job offer in my same field–but the hours max out at 40 per week. However, the new job would only pay 65% of what I’m making now. I would still make plenty of money to pay my bills and to have enough left over for savings and fun stuff–but it’s still a fairly significant pay cut. In terms of job advancement, I’d say that both employeers offer the same amount of opportunities. I have two friends who made the move from my current employeer to my potential employeer and they both say it was a great move due to how much more they enjoy their life now that they are not consumed by work. Still…a part of me says to stick it out at the current job until I absolutely cannot do it another day just to keep building that savings account.
Has anyone been in a similar situation?
Post # 3
OMG I keep trying to comment and my computer keeps deleting it!
That’s so tough. I think that you should take the other offer. If you don’t take it now, nothing is to say that it will still be around later when you are truly sick of your current job.
Post # 4
I have not been in this situation, but here are my (humble) opinions:
1) Do you have children? I know that if I had children, I would probably choose the pay cut in order to spend more time with them. You did not mention that you have children, so I am assuming you dont??
2) How long will the opportunity be available at this other company? If this were a one time only chance to be guaranteed a job with this particular company, in your field, with these set hours, then I might consider it. If you have the chance to wait it out for a while and then take the position, then I might hold off…
3) Is your emotional or physical health suffering with the amount of travel and hours you work? What about your relationship with your FI? Does your current job affect it at all?
Honestly, a 35% paycut in this economy is huge! On the other hand, your happiness and well-being should be paramount. Good luck and best wishes in whatever decision you make!!
Post # 5
I was in this situation a while back…. I was working full time when my fi and I had the talk about cutting my hours to help him out more with his business (Wasnt getting paid to do it but was more than happy to do it becasue I know eventually it will be our lives)… The pay cut was kinda bothering me in the back of my mind, but when I finally did it I couldnt have been happier!! I found I wasnt as angry and as stressed as I usually was and the pay cut didn’t really bother me once it happend… I just felt like my life had finally found balance.
Post # 6
Eh… what’s the point of having money if you can’t enjoy it?
If it were the difference between having savings at all or living month to month, obviously that wouldn’t be worth the pay cut, but it sounds like you’d be going from a cushy middle class job to a slightly less cushy but still completely middle class job. Doesn’t sound so bad if it means actually getting to do things that will make you feel fulfilled. I won’t call myself a Marxist, but I think his work on alienation is very good. You might give it a look.
Post # 7
1) No kids, but will likely be trying in the next year or two. One I have a child I would absolutely need to find a different job, as I would not consider doing my current traveling job with a little one at home. The only women I work with that have kids have stay-at-home-husbands. 🙂
2) I would say that this opportunity will be around for a while. It’s a local consulting job and I know several people who were hired there in the past year.
3) Yes, Yes, Yes, and Yes. My job is super high stress–from the work environment to the hours to the constant air travel. The potential new job would be no travel and low stress (according to those I know who work there regarding stress level). My Fiance had been living an hour and a half a part, so we had only seen eachother on weekends. With that situation, the business travel wasn’t that bad since I didn’t get to see him during the week regardless. Fiance just moved in with me, as he got a job in my city, and while I thought I would feel better about my job with him living with me, I actually felt much worse. I think nothing of working until 8 – 9pm during the week, but I felt totally guilty doing it last week when he was waiting at home for me.
A part of me feels like I will be throwing money away by taking a pay cut, and another part of me says that I need to reduce stress and enjoy my life more–which is in favor of the new gig. I would add that I feel like I am paid a ridiculously high salary now (to account for all the travel), so 65% of that would still be considered a high salary for someone with my background and experience.
Post # 8
While I’m in a different field, my schedule sounds a lot like yours. Today I am the guest of the day at the Holiday Inn but I would much rather be home with my husband! If I could hack a pay cut financially, I would do it, especially if the new company offers the same opportunity for advancement. Unless you truly enjoy your current job, the money is never going to make you happy.
Post # 9
I’m a lawyer. I work about 40 hrs/week, work mostly from home, and have crazy flexibility. I also make approximately 1/3 of what my best friend makes at a BigLaw firm (we graduated the same year, same approx grades, journal, etc). She works 70+ hrs/week.. is forced to check her blackberry every 20 minutes nights and weekends included. She has had to cancel vacations, cancel appointments, cancel plans.
I honestly would not trade places with her… despite the money. And she often says how much she wishes she could trade the money for my flexibility.
IMO work is what you do to finance your LIFE. If you can afford to take a job that will let you live more of your life, jump on it.
Post # 10
I would be torn. I am all about the work/life balance and I would generally say to jump at that opportunity right away. However, it sounds like the spot will be available for a while, and that you’d be losing about 35% if you switch over.
I’d talk it over with your fiance, maybe it’d be worth keeping this job for now, saving up that overhead, and then taking off additional time once you have a child. Since you’d mentioned maybe trying in the next year or two, it may be worth comparing your stress/income now to the savings and time off you could take with your child (if that’s what you desire). If taking extra time off to stay home isn’t a big issue, then I’d take the new job ASAP and enjoy the new free time 🙂
ETA: CorgiTales- I’m in law school and that is my philosophy on life as well. Sometimes people look at me like I’m crazy for not wanting to ‘fulfill my potential,’ but I’m so glad to see attorneys who have set other priorities than just getting in the hours and making money.
Post # 11
I am in the EXACT SITUATION, Light! I just got offered a job that’s less stress, but with pay cut. I’m also torn between: “Why are you throwing your high paying job away?” and “What kind of lifestyle are you giving yourself with more money but more stress?”
I’m about to get married and thinking of wanting to spend more time with my future husband. However, I also think: Why waste your potential? You DID go to school to get this career.
It’s a mild dilemma. I’ll “piggy back” on your post and see what advice you get. Thank you for posting the topic.
Post # 12
My thoughts (plain and simple). If you can comfortably afford the pay cut, then take the new job. Who needs more stress?
Post # 13
I make little money and I work all the time and am very unhappy. Honestly, if I could work less and be happier but make even less money (but still survive) I’d probably take it.
It depends how much 35% is though. Like if you make 20K and you are getting a 35% pay cut then that’s a pretty big pay cut. But if you make 90K and are getting a 35% pay cut then I would think you could probably still survive.
I’ve come to learn that happiness and health are worth more than any pay check. And if your current job is just going to cause you to get more stressed out, tired, and unhappy then it’s not really worth that extra 35% that you are getting paid.
Post # 14
Last poster said it best–happiness and health are worth more than any pay check. Thanks for all the advice bees, I’m going to go for it and accept the offer of the new job. I’ll be going back to the salary I had two years ago (current job has crazy-high raises) and I was perfectly fine money-wise back then. My fiance and puppy will be happy to have me around in the evenings and I truely believe I’m adding years to my life, as my current job completely wears me out.
Post # 15
I am also in the process of going through this situation! I decided last week to quit my stressful, great salary, sales position to do a total 180 and work for my uncle’s oil/gas leasing company. It’s scary because I am doing well financially and will be taking a decent paycut at least for the short term. I have potential to make great money in the future though. But, the new job pays NO benefits so i’ll hop onto DH’s which is new to me too! The good thing about the new job is that it won’t be stressful and there is the potential to work from home and better hours. I’m looking forward to this change but I’m nervous at the same time.
I say if you can afford it, go for it! My Darling Husband and I discussed this in great length and figured out that we could make it work. I wasn’t happy in my current job and that was making me miserable! No paycheck is worth that.