Hi Jo,

Let me begin by saying: I love marketing operations.

I’ve been in the space for years, learned the software, and made my mark at my company. There isn’t much about MOPs I don’t know. The problem is, I’m too comfortable.

I find myself wondering what else might be out there and whether it’s time to make a career change.

How do you know when it’s the right moment to move on? Should I give it another year or venture out into the unknown?

Appreciated,

Antsy Anthony

pink seperator line

Hi, Anthony.

Whoo boy, this is no small question!

Career choices are some of the most challenging to make. They impact everything from income to work-life balance. It’s no wonder you’re taking some time to mull this over.

 

Signs you need a career change

The good news is that no matter what you decide, marketing operations isn’t going anywhere.

Exploring your opportunities outside of MOPs doesn’t negate all your learnings. Many skills you might pick up on the outside can strengthen your marketing acumen. Leaving MOPs doesn’t mean it won’t be there waiting for your return.

But if it’s truly time for you to fly, here are a few of the main signs I look for when assessing whether it might be time for a change.

 

1. You’re not learning anything new.

Curiosity is a crucial ingredient for effective MOPs professionals. It’s how someone in automation wanders into dashboard development or a designer picks up skills in data and analytics.

But not every company has the bandwidth to support this kind of exploration, and many lack the budget to backfill.

If you find yourself short on inquisitiveness at work—if the fire of your thirst for knowledge is getting doused at the office—it may be time to seek growth elsewhere.

 

2. You want to start leading a team, but you’ve got no team.

If you’ve been a team of one for a while, it can be hard to know what to do with your managerial aspirations.

Assess your options. For example, leadership roles may be available at your current company, but you’re being told you’re most useful where you are.

Don’t fight a losing battle. If the dream of leadership is niggling in the back of your mind, it may be worth finding a position that will let you spread your wings. Read our post on advancing your career in MOPs for more.

 

3. You’ve suggested efficiencies but aren’t being heard.

As a marketing ops professional, you see all the small details of your company’s campaigns and initiatives—and that puts you in the perfect position to improve processes.

“We should run our webinars differently” and “Do you think we’ve overlooked this audience?” are valid points. But, depending on the environment, these kinds of brainwaves can get shut down.

If you’ve tried asking questions or providing constructive feedback and been rebuffed, you may want to transition to a department or company that values your input.

 

4. You’re looking for a coach or mentor.

Nobody grows in a vacuum.

Learning from an accomplished professional or thought leader can fast-track your gains when you’re looking to expand your skills.

That said, it may be that your current company is too slammed to provide much in the way of mentorship. This is an important cue: it’s possible that the guidance you’re hoping to receive is outside your current organization. In the case of missing coaches, don’t be afraid to branch out.

 

Limitless career potential

However you weigh out your career options, I’m confident your MOPs experience will give you a leg up.

I know people who have gone from MOPs to project management, from MOPs to Python development, and from marketing analyst to sales ops to automation.

The journey may be winding, but rest assured: the world is certainly still your oyster.

And you may find yourself returning to MOPs down the road, re-equipped and reinspired.

All the best,
Jo

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