The job search can be a long, arduous process that simply grinds you down over time. Although you might start out with a clearly defined vision for what type of position you are looking for, what compensation you will accept, and what type of company culture is the best fit for you, the more time that goes by without signs of success, the more the process wears you down to where you will accept almost anything. Don’t give in to that ‘I just need a job!’ mentality however, as taking a role that you know is wrong can be worse for you than remaining without one. Here are 5 red flags to look for that mean you shouldn’t accept that job.

All the employees are new, but the company isn’t

A well-established company that has a rapid turnover of most of its staff, as in, when you interview at the company offices it seems that everyone there is relatively new, is a big red flag. The fact that the business has been around for a while would suggest a certain stability, but having had a massive change in personnel, whether through firing, redundancy, or quitting, signals that there may be a deeper problem, one that you should steer clear of.

Your interviewer makes negative comments about current staff

5 signs you shouldn't take the job

You will read in numerous career advice articles that, as a jobseeker, you should never badmouth a former employer at an interview, as this gives your interviewer a negative opinion of you. This is equally true in reverse however. An interviewer that complains about current staff members to a potential new employee is a bad sign, as remember, in a few months it could be you that they are talking about. This is clearly unprofessional behaviour, and any company that employs such an individual in such an important position, is one you should avoid.

The position on offer isn’t clearly defined

Although companies in today’s evolving job market are always on the lookout for multi-disciplined candidates that can bring more value and knowledge to a role, and an understanding of how it fits into the company’s wider plan, a job description that is completely vague is worrisome. If your interviewer seems to be describing a role that doesn’t seem clearly defined the company may be unsure of how they plan to utilise you, or may be expecting you to do the work of two or three professionals across multiple disciplines. As a jobseeker this is the type of role you’d do good to turn your back on.

There appears to be no apparent room for progression

5 signs you shouldn't take the job

As a jobseeker looking to work hard, and driven to succeed, the last thing you want to do is take a dead end job. Although you may be suffering from an overdrawn job search, willing to take almost anything for the sake of being employed, remember you won’t feel that way 6-12 months down the line. If you take a job that has no clear room for progression, a role that doesn’t evolve to challenge you over time, you will quickly become dissatisfied and indifferent about your work, which is not what you want, right?

Current employees want to be anywhere else

If you get the opportunity, carefully observe the company’s current employees when you go for an interview, remember, if you were to take a job offer, that could be you. Do they seem content? Happily conducting their day to day duties? Or does everyone generally seem dejected, downtrodden, and simply want to be anywhere else but here? If that is the case, turn and run the other way, as something must be amiss, and you should steer clear.

If you have been unsuccessfully looking for a new opportunity for a long time it can become increasingly attractive to just take the first offer that comes your way. Don’t. Taking a bad offer, or one that is wrong for you, can turn out even worse than not having a job. Instead wait for the right fit, for a role that ticks a lot of your boxes, as this will leave you feeling more content overall.

*Images sourced from approvedindex, illustrated by Clara Prieto

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