From time to time, you may find yourself in a position of power, a position where you don’t feel at risk and have the luxury of pursuing your right next step in your career.

With a few coaching clients lately, given the insanely hot job market, I have found myself saying, “Tell them they’ll have to back up the money truck!”

Well, maybe don’t tell them exactly that, but you get my drift.

Let’s say you’re doing pretty well in your business. You’ve been able to navigate the choppy waters of the pandemic and are doing fine, all things considered. However, some job or partnership opportunity comes out of nowhere and all of a sudden you’re actually considering it.

If you’re not at risk or stressed about money, you are in the ideal position to objectively evaluate the opportunity and negotiate the best possible compensation. You don’t have to make a move. You’re fine where you are, but there may be some compelling things about the offer. Hmmmm….

Or, maybe you have a good job, but the chance for advancement wasn’t what you had thought, or you got passed over for a promotion. Again, you may not feel at risk because your contribution is being recognized and you’re being paid pretty well, but a recruiter reached out and you took the call.

When you’re not at risk is the perfect time to have these conversations. You’ll be relaxed and confident. You’ll be listening carefully for opportunities and looking for red flags.

Even if you decide to stay where you are, you’ll be doing it because it was the right decision for you at this time, not because you felt like you didn’t have any options.

I always tell people we’re all self-employed, whether you work for yourself or not. We are all in charge of our own destiny, and given the fact there is no security in whatever career path you choose, it’s better to always be scanning the horizons and evaluating options.

I remember when a former manager called me to tell me he had accepted a job offer at another firm. I almost fell off my chair. He loved where he was and had a high-level job that he was crushing. I asked him what happened. He told me the company culture had changed due to a recent acquisition and the new market strategy wasn’t in line with what he wanted to be doing.

He also told me his new employer had made him an offer he couldn’t refuse with a signing bonus that turned his head. He told me, “Catherine, they backed up the money truck.”