“But I don’t want to just leave them!”
A client I was meeting with recently uttered this statement regarding her current employer. However, during this same conversation (as well as others), she has mentioned how much of a mismatch things really are with her present position.
I responded, “If you were dating someone who made you this miserable, would you stay with him?”
It got me thinking about how a bad job is like a bad relationship when it comes to breaking up, particularly from a female experience. Here’s a list of excuses women come up with to stay in a bad relationship and their career counterparts:
1. “It’s too close to his birthday.” The career equivalent of this relates to some event, like the landing of a new client or coming upon the busy season. You don’t want to ruin the “high” that everyone is on because things are going well, so you just stay quiet. And resent every day that you put the company’s needs before your own.
2. “I like his parents/family.” Even if they don’t like their job, some folks experience sadness at the thought of not seeing their co-workers every day or may be worried about disappointing a boss that they really like. However, if you find your work mind-numbing, all the great people in the world aren’t going to make you fulfilled in your job.
Or, if you have an amazing opportunity just drop into your lap, passing it up because of your colleagues can lead to feeling of regret. How do you think you would feel if you stayed because of the people, and they ended up leaving because of various life changes? Where would that leave you?
3. “He knows me!” Just because a situation (personal or work) is comfortable is no reason to stay in it. Certainly, being proficient in one’s job is important and should be considered, but it doesn’t justify continuing in the position if you don’t like it. Look at all the pros and cons of a job, not just one.
4. “His pet goldfish just died!” So you have some folks on your team out due to illness or you’ve lost one or two key members due to promotions or accepting different positions. Face it — there’s never going to be an ideal time to quit. Something always comes up. If you have been going over in your mind how much you hate what you do, devise an exit strategy and then execute it!
5. “He’s such a great guy, and everyone likes him. Why isn’t it working out?” The thing is, not everyone has the same tastes. While some people would give anything to have a job like yours, you may find yourself saying, “Take my job. Please.” It’s perfectly fine to want to leave a job that others would consider a dream position. What excites you professionally may not thrill them, either. Base your feelings about a job on how you feel, not on everyone else’s thoughts.
Image courtesy of Yasser Alghofily
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