People change jobs for a lot of different reasons – some are excellent, and include looking for more structure or support, perhaps looking to change or lessen a difficult commute, or often to avoid a work personality situation that has become untenable and affects your productivity. However, another reason for changing jobs should be something all candidates consider: you need to change to grow. When you have been at a firm for a number of years whether you know or not you start to stagnate – you learn less, opportunities are fewer and it is very likely you are extremely comfortable. Those aren’t necessarily bad things, because wow – who wouldn’t want to be comfortable, and know what to expect every day? It sounds great, but it isn’t. In the legal market, you should consider changing jobs at the 5 – 8 mark. You need new challenges, new possibilities, and new people to work with. A new job means shaking up your routine, learning how to interact with people you aren’t comfortable with, and learning new skills. Also, prospective employers often look at longevity negatively and think that the candidate may not be able to adapt, change, or learn new things. I’m not suggesting people should change jobs recklessly, and if you are one of the few people who work for a firm that is consistently providing new challenges and growth opportunities, you should consider staying; however, most people will find new positions will provide better pay, new ways to challenge yourself and an entirely new outlook on your job.