What's your Problem?

Should I move abroad to get a more secure job?

by Jeremy Bullmore
Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

Q: I work for a large financial services firm in the City. I've missed the first couple of rounds of redundancies but I'm not confident I'll still be in my job at the end of the year.

Quite a few of my colleagues have taken positions in New York and Zurich, where things seem more secure, but I'm not sure I want to uproot my young family. As you'd imagine, I'm not averse to taking a few risks, but I don't want to create unnecessary upheaval for them.

A: I have a slightly shameful attitude to decision-making - and that's never to make an important one until it's clearly necessary. It's not a perfect system, of course, but I've seen so many examples of friends and acquaintances admirably determined to plan ahead. So they make some courageous and irrevocable decision - only to be confounded shortly afterwards by a totally unforeseen event.

In your case, the only reason for you to decide now to take your family abroad would be if they and you already wanted to make such a move, irrespective of the economic climate. And that's clearly not the case.

You've got a young family. You've got schools to think about. Your company has already conducted two rounds of redundancies and you weren't affected. I don't know what your appraisals say, but it would seem you're well regarded.

Do you really want to run the risk - before it's necessary - of uprooting your family and plonking them down thousands of miles away; and then gradually realising that the worst of the redundancy epidemic in Britain seems to be over and that some sort of corner might have been turned?

- Jeremy Bullmore is a former creative director and chairman of J Walter Thompson London. His book Another Bad Day at the Office? is published by Penguin at £6.99. Address your problem to Jeremy Bullmore at: editorial@managementtoday.com. Regrettably, no correspondence can be entered into.

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