So recently a sales leader I really like reached out to me regarding his next role.  He’d recently resigned from a startup I knew reasonably well, and where I’d met the founder.  I was happy to help.

Until I looked at his LinkedIn and saw that while I thought he’d been there for a while … but it was just 1 Year 7 Months per LinkedIn.

Then I looked at his prior role.  1 Year 4 Months.  And the one before that?  Not much longer or better.

I wanted to help, but without a single recent role for more than 24 months, and with him having resigned (not been laid off) from his last role, I just couldn’t.  Whatever his strengths, I couldn’t in good faith recommend him for a leadership role, or even one in a real position of trust.

So this is a very simple post, and a simple suggestion: before you quit a role you’ve had some success in, at least consider staying 24 months.

I know times have changed, and the world has changed, and folks are leaving roles more quickly, more often.  But almost every CEO and founder know is looking for folks to put in positions of trust that might stay.  That might stay through Year 2 when you get better, Year 3 when you really crush it, and Year 4 when you run the place.  If you’re just there to learn a bit, you often learn all the playbook in 14-18 months.  But if you are there to lead, even as an IC, you start to get great around month 24-30.  And then scale from there.

If you don’t have an urgent reason to leave, maybe just stay 24+ months.  Any less, and not only do you not really get much credit — you also get a small ding on your resume.

A related post here:

Why If You Quit Every Year You Won’t Ever Make Any Real Money

(a little longer image here)

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