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The recent CIM Marketing Salary Survey has caused a bit of a stir in the industry (this article provides a great summary of the findings).

Aside from the worrying gender gap in terms of pay, what I found interesting is how often people are moving around. Nearly half of the survey’s respondents said that they had been in their current job for less than two years, a fifth changed jobs in the last year, and 44% said they were actively looking to change jobs in the next year.

While I haven’t seen such a widespread desire to change roles so often, I can attest to the fact that employees are no longer at the beck and call of their employer. They understand their worth and want to be recognised and compensated accordingly. They also understand that the industry is evolving quickly, and that they need to constantly be learning new digital skills if they’re to increase their value.

It’s a great sign of a healthy job market – employees are able to take control of their careers, and employers benefit from passionate, engaged employees, even if only for a couple of years.

Are you a mover?

If you’re planning on moving around until you find the perfect role, then you need to be prepared to explain your lack of commitment to potential employers. Being able to measure your impact, even over a short space of time, will be crucial, as will showing how your diverse experience has taught you some valuable skills that you would not otherwise have picked up.

Or is it better to stay?

It isn’t always necessary to leave your current job to get a pay rise or to learn new skills. You might be surprised at how willing your manager is to help you reach your goals.

Let your manager know how you feel about things, and where you’d like to be – even if that’s in a role that doesn’t currently exist at your company, or in another department.

You might be tempted to threaten your boss with a job offer you’ve received from somewhere else. This really isn’t a good idea – not only because it can ruin good working relationships, but because it can backfire further down the line when the things that frustrate you now raise their heads again and your employer feels over a barrel to keep you.

Rather set a time to discuss your role and performance. Come armed with a list of your accomplishments and how you have impacted the business in your current role. Then be calm and level-headed about stating your case.

It’s also a good idea to help your manager prepare for the meeting by sending some highlights through before the meeting (watch this space for a post on this).

Either way – keep learning

In this recent blog post, I asked some industry leaders what they thought future marketing roles looked like. What was interesting was that they all felt that specialising and having (well-thought-out) opinions were important.

At the end of the day, ours is one of the fastest-evolving industries in the world and in order to get ahead, we all have to work hard to carve out a niche for ourselves.

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