Considering a Career Change? By When?


By when will you make the change? Dave Munson, founder and owner of Saddleback Leather, asks his team members two important words: “by when?” In a recenter interview published in Forbes, Kevin Kruse asks Munson to share his best advice for those starting their leadership journey.

Munson: This is great. This is really an easy one, okay? But it’s huge. Ask this question, “By when?” That’s it, those two words, “By when?”

You ask them, “Hey, that’s a great idea. By when can you have that?” If they go, “I don’t know. I’ll have to check and get back with ya.” You go, “Okay, by when will you get back with me?” They go, “Ah, Wednesday?” You go, “Okay.” So on Wednesday you go, “Hey, so what’d you find out?” They go, “Oh yeah, yeah. It’s doable.” I go, “By when can you have it?” They go, “I can have it by next Wednesday.” You go, “Great. Thanks.” If you remember one thing from this whole conversation here it should be “By when?”

What great advice. These two words keep everyone on task. Rather than offering a vague response, asking “by when” forces people to really consider the idea and offer up a deadline.

So I ask you the same.

Are you considering making a change in your professional life?:

  • Asking for a raise
  • Learning a new skill
  • Networking more
  • Seeking a new position

If so, BY WHEN?

As in the example given by Munson, you may need to break things down into bite-sized pieces. For example if you are seeking to build your network, you will want to increase your networking efforts. That may require a few steps to achieve you ultimate goal:

  • Research the potential networking groups in your industry and in your geographic area
  • Add their events to your calendar and actually attend
  • Determine your elevator speech
  • Set goals for what you hope to accomplish

After each of these, ask yourself “by when?”

Seeking a raise? Then you will do a little research first:

  • Research what the standard salary for people in your position, with your experience across your industry?
  • What accomplishments have you made that would warrant a raise?
  • What financial benefits did these accomplishments offer the company?
  • What is your opening and closing comments when you talk with your boss?
  • Practice your request
  • Research advice on how to ask for a raise
  • Get on your boss’ calendar

Again, set a time frame for each of these tasks. When will you do these items?

When we put a goal down in writing and add a specific time table to each tactic, we are more focused and more inclined to achieve our goals. For more information, check out my article entitled Creating a Career Pace Strategy for Maximum Impact.


JJ DiGeronimo JJ DiGeronimo, a speaker, author and thought-leader for Women in Tech and Girls and STEM, empowers professional women and consults with senior executives on strategies to retain and attract Women in Technology to increase thought and leadership diversity within organizations.

Check out JJ’s new award winning book Accelerate Your Impact by downloading three free chapters.accelerate your impact

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JJ DiGeronimo

JJ DiGeronimo

Speaker, Author & Thought Leader for Women in Tech & Girls in STEM.

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