Everyone has bad days at work. A presentation goes poorly. Coworkers seem particularly annoying. Management ignored your brilliant idea. Often issues can be resolved, but sometimes it’s just better to move on to greener pastures. KSL Jobs looks at how to know when it’s time to quit your job.
1. You regularly dread work
Not wanting to get out of bed Monday mornings is pretty common. But does your dread for work start on Saturday? Probably not a good sign. Do you keep telling yourself you’re going to quit, but stay on because of a sense of duty? You could be working for a perfectly good company with great benefits and still hate your job.
Try writing down what you want from the job. Aside from fame and fortune, obviously. Then write down the characteristics of your current position. If those two lists diverge greatly, that could explain why you’re unhappy there. It doesn’t mean you or the company have failed. It just means it isn’t the right fit for you.
2. You’re bored and/or stagnating
Some jobs you could do for a lifetime, others launch you in new directions. If you feel like you are no longer evolving and contributing, or that you’ve accomplished everything you wanted to in your current position, it may be time to branch out.
Knowing when to quit and when to push through work challenges can be tricky. Before handing in your two weeks notice, consider how you could improve your situation. Could you adjust or reinvent your job? For instance, you started in accounting but have found you really prefer programming code.
If you are feeling restless, talk to your manager about the possibility of moving to a new position or department. If no change is possible, and you feel like you’ll have no further opportunities for growth, there may be nothing left to gain by staying on board.
3. You feel undervalued/underpaid
A college mentor said you’ll never be paid what you’re worth. Probably true. So, when you are meeting — and certainly exceeding — performance goals but getting no recognition, it can be pretty frustrating. Hard work should mean more perks and compensation, right?
Even if you’re being paid a respectable salary, you may still feel unappreciated. While you may not need to be named employee of the month — though deserving — occasional positive feedback would let you know your efforts are noted. Of course, you wouldn’t turn down a raise.
During your next performance review, discuss your concerns. If your supervisor doesn’t see an issue or offer a solution, it may be a sign you should quit your job.
4. It’s an unhealthy environment
Certainly a workplace that allows dangerous or unethical behavior is unhealthy mentally, emotionally and perhaps even physically. Colleagues who are difficult to get along with occasionally are one thing, but those who consistently make you feel uncomfortable are quite another.
It’s not just about outright rude behavior, either. Coworkers and supervisors should be willing to offer guidance and assistance. You’re all in this together, after all. If you’re left to flounder, you probably won’t be happy there.
The opposite situation can also be problematic. Micromanagers can interfere with your productivity, leading to frustration on both sides. If there’s nothing you can do to change the situation, you don’t need any other signs you should quit your job. Find something else. Fast.
5. You have an awesome opportunity
When you have a pretty good job working for a pretty nice company, you may feel a sense of loyalty. After all, your grandpa worked for the same business for 45 years, so maybe you should, too. However, you shouldn’t ignore opportunities.
If you’re fortunate, one day you may be offered the job you’ve always secretly dreamed of. Or, you might be given the chance to work for a company you’ve always admired. But you may feel guilty quitting your current situation because you’ve had positive experiences there. How do you know when to leave your job and pursue this golden opportunity? Perhaps your current
employer hired you right out of college and you feel grateful for their faith in you. Or you’ve worked there for 13 years and have no complaints.
If it’s guilt holding you back, let go. You have no obligation to a particular company. Even if you feel you are indispensable, someone else can take your place. The business will go on without you. Unless your leaving will lead to the swift downfall of the business, your boss will understand. In fact, they’ll probably be pleased for you. Ultimately, you need to make professional decisions based on what you want for your career.
Change for the better
Today’s workers spend an average 4.2 years with an employer, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Quitting more often than that could be a red flag to potential employers, so give some careful consideration to the decision. When wondering how to know when it’s time to quit your job, reflect on what you’re looking for. Is your job just boring, or one you literally dread? Is the work environment compatible with your career plans?
When you’re ready to start looking for your next job, check out KSL Jobs. There you can search by work type, location, salary requirement and other factors most important to your workplace happiness.