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  1. #1
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    Jun 2006
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    Default Need Advice on a Possible New Job Offer...

    ok, here is the short story.
    Im a graphic designer for a regional newspaper...i.e. I don't get paid worth a shite! My husband is in a new job, he makes decent money, but we still live paycheck to paycheck. I know that if I were to be making fairly reasonable money, we'd be doing much better w/paying off debts and saving for the future, but for right now, our bills are paid, we have food on the table..but our funds for anything fun are non-existent. (we have NO money leftover for savings)

    SO...I got an offer for a job that will pay approx $12K more than what I'm making now, but it's STILL below-average for what a graphic designer in my area should be making. BUT, from the sounds of it, I'd be getting a pretty good amount of experience doing things that I have yet to do in my industry (package design, children's books, etc).

    I have 6 years experience as a graphic artist. But my actual WORK experience has been fairly limited to advertising & other forms of print. I'm always up for challenges and new things.......however, I'm 30, married and would like to actually BUY a condo/townhouse within the next year or so & plan for our future of having kids....so money IS a big object!

    My question is this:
    Eventhough this new opportunity would pay more than I'm making now, it's still below the "average" of salaries in my area....should I jump at the chance for a new opportunity despite the "o.k" salary? or continue to work for peanuts until a higher paying offer comes along (which could be risky)....???

    K & J 10.15.05

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
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    20,270

    Default

    First I would counter offer to try to see if you can get more money. Then I would take the new job, work there for a year, and then re-evaluate your options. You will at least make more money and gain valuable experience in the meantime, vs. not, now.
    isabella noelle :: 12.7.09

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    Default

    I actually started off naming a ballpark figure of my salary requirements, and in return they came back w/ $3K lower than the number I initially gave.

    The job title is an "Assistant Designer"...so there's a salary cap there. Im just concerned that it'd be a step back in terms of "title"...but for ME...it'd be a pay raise. (this employer doesn't know that I make BARE BONES though!)

    K & J 10.15.05

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
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    WA
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    6,472

    Default

    I say take the new job, stick with it for a year or two, and move on to something else (unless in the meantime they've given you big raises & a promotion, or something). While the job title is only "assistant" designer, it sounds like the actual work experience would be good for you in the sense that it would expand your experience in graphic design quite a bit compared to the limited type of design work you're doing now. More experience will make you more marketable in the future, regardless of your job title - don't let that stand in your way.

    Money-wise, a 12k raise would certainly be a step in the right direction for you, compared to where you're at now. And you never know, maybe they really will give you a raise once you're in the job for awhile & prove your capabilities to them. If not then like I said, move on to something else a year or so down the road.

    Or if the idea of settling for the 12k raise & passing up the possibility of getting a different job offer in the near future with a higher salary is a really big concern for you, then maybe you should take the job but keep feelers out there for other job possibilities as well...people do it all the time.

    From what you've described here, I think if I were in your shoes I wouldn't feel any motivation to turn down this job offer in order to stay with the current job, since you're only getting limited design experience there & the pay is peanuts. Take a chance on the new job.
    Sarah Journaling on LJ now - send me a PM if you want to be added to my friends list!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
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    I could have written your post 6 months ago.

    My DH worked as a graphic designer for a regional newspaper, and made a craptastic hourly wage. In June, he interviewed for and was offered a position that was more in line with what he wanted to do (less advertising, more product brochures, flash presentations, 3d animations, etc). The job was salaried, but still fairly low paying--probably around 2K more/year when all was said and done.

    We agonized over the decision. He didn't want to look like a job hopper if something better came along, but at the same time, it was just moving from one low paying job to another. In the end, we decided that the change in job duties was worth the move.

    That said, he just had his 6 month review, and got a decent raise, so it's almost in line with where he had hoped to *start*. Do I think it's a forever job? Probably not, but for the time being, there seems to be good opportunities for him to learn new programs and skills and to gain some valuable resume building experience.

    Hope that helps! I'd say that if the opportunities at the new job are appealing to you, I'd take it.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
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    Brooklyn, NY
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    Speaking as a graphic designer: Take it!

    It's a significant pay increase over your current salary in addition to be a significant *experience* gainer over what you're doing now. The new skills, experience, and portfolio pieces will be invaluable to you later on. Additionally, within a year you could potentially make up the difference between their offer and your preferred salary range.

    Are you using the AIGA salary guide to get an idea of your area's pay range?
    Shiny!

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