According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employees who earn a salary stay with their current employers, on average, for just 4.6 years. Job search website Monster.com claims that moving jobs frequently can seriously damage future career opportunities, by giving prospective employers a negative impression. Is there a case for staying for more than ten years instead then?
For example, a common reason for quitting a job is because the work is too difficult. Being unable to rise to the challenge, or to ask for help or training, is not going to entice potential employers. Another reason for quitting is boredom; whilst this can be dangerous to a worker's professional development it is not necessarily reason to move on, unless all other options within the company have been exhausted.
Another common reason for leaving a job is not being able to get along with others at the company. Occasionally this reason is justified if the employee doesn't fit in with the corporate culture, but often the problem is going to be with the individual who is unable to work as part of a team. Also, a common reason is moving job purely for financial reasons. If money is the only reason, then the worker is most likely going to be unfulfilled in the long term.
So while there seem to be lots of bad reasons outcomes from leaving your job early, there are many good reasons to stay at a company for ten or more years. Firstly, staying in a current job will make it easier to rise in seniority, in contrast to moving to a new job and having to battle to establish a role there. Also, with this seniority comes the opportunity to become a leader, and develop a loyal following within a team.
Another benefit to staying with a current employer is stability, which means an employee can safely make long-term plans about their future. Also, sticking with a job means that a worker doesn't have to pay the fees associated with moving house, in the long-term retirement funds are going to avoid the negative effects that result from switching employment. Many companies also reward loyal employees with an increase in paid time off if they remain there long enough.
In addition, staying in a job for ten years or more shows others that the employee is dependable, and they will trust and respect them for it. Also, many employees who stay at a company for ten years will have progressed through many, often increasingly challenging roles during their time there. They are able to find what role they are most passionate about, and this illustrates the benefits of moving within a company, as opposed to moving between companies; the employee maintains their status and perks, but is also able to try out different roles.
Yet another benefit is that it shows strength of character to persevere at a job for ten years or more, despite all of the problems, challenges and perceived unfairness the employee comes across during that time. Finally, staying with the same company means that the employee can have an influence on the company's future direction, from an experience and knowledge standpoint.
In conclusion, there are many good arguments for staying in a job for ten years or more and very few arguments against it. Despite this, most employees are leaving after five years or less, potentially damaging their career prospects.