Are you really ready to quit?


Sometimes quitting a job is clearly the right decision. But if you’re generally happy with the exception of one particular issue, it’s worth talking to your boss about before you quit. The author offers recommendations on how to manage conversations around four common issues: 1) Labor logistics. Even if your company has announced a new “one size fits all” policy governing how and where employees are to work, don’t necessarily accept it as final. If you plan to leave otherwise, it is worth asking if any exceptions can be made; 2) Your projects and skills development. Before you walk away, say what you want. Would you like to learn new skills? Projects in which you want to participate? ; 3) Colleagues with whom you work. If toxic team members are scaring you away, it’s worth considering whether you might be reassigned to a new project or team within the organization; 4) Money. If you feel like you are underpaid, or if you have gained new skills or experiences that make you particularly marketable, or if there is a particular life goal that you feel is urgent (such as earning enough to buy a house), a raise may have to leave your job. As is always the case, it’s important to ask your question thoughtfully, making a reasoned argument about the value you add to the business and why a pay raise is deserved. By strategically elevating these conversations, you’re giving yourself the best possible chance of making your current job work for you, without the stress and hassle of having to leave if you don’t really want to.

If you are thinking about quitting your job, you are not alone. Polls show that anywhere from a trimester at more than half of employees plan to look for new jobs after the pandemic. In part, this is a normal churn rate – professionals looking for new professional challenges – who are unusually clustered due to the reluctance of employees to leave a “safe” position during the uncertainty of the year. last. But others are looking for different reasons, such as concerns about their company’s post-pandemic policies or changes in workplace dynamics in the last year of working remotely (and the return to in-person arrangements. or hybrids).

If you’re not sure whether leaving your business is the right decision, or if you’re staying on condition that some of your concerns can be resolved, it’s worth talking to your manager before giving notice.

Returning to the office after the pandemic is an introductory period in which standards change and routines are reestablished. Coupled with the business’s keen awareness that many employees are considering other opportunities, if you have a solid reputation within your organization, this can give you unique leverage to negotiate the arrangements that work best for you. Here are four things to discuss with your manager before you decide to leave.

Labor logistics

Last year, knowledge workers jumped into remote work, and they generally liked it. A study found that a superb 87% of professionals who worked remotely during the pandemic would like to continue the practice at least one day a week – and if their companies don’t allow them, 42% are willing to quit their jobs. Many employees may also be reluctant to revert to the intensive travel schedules that were sometimes required before the pandemic (a colleague I know accelerated her resignation plan when her consulting firm announced her intention, after a year of working remotely. , to dismiss its employees “on the road” 3 to 5 days a week).

But even if your company has announced a new “one size fits all” policy governing how and where employees are required to work, don’t necessarily accept it as final. If you are planning on leaving otherwise, it is worth asking if any exceptions can be made. The answer can be no, but especially if you are in a critical position (a salesperson who generates substantial income), in an area in short supply (such as a data analyst), or if you have accumulated significant political capital within your business, they may very well decide that it is worth adapting to your preferences.

Your projects and skills development

Many professionals start looking for new opportunities because they feel their work has become routine or has stalled. (This can be particularly acute after the pandemic, given that for a year we avoided new experiences and barely left our homes.) Great managers scan the horizon for new development opportunities for their employees and reflect. proactively in how to help them develop new skills. But even the best managers have, in many cases, spent the past year focusing on how to keep their heads above water under difficult circumstances: their ability to be “cognitively magnanimous” and to focus on. your needs has probably been diminished. This is why it is important, before you withdraw, to stand up for what you want. It is certainly easier for leaders to adapt to the post-pandemic landscape to keep you in the same job, doing the same thing; they may not be eager for change. But chances are they are even less eager for you to leave the company altogether, so if you ask (for example) that the company fund your participation in a particular executive development program, or allow you to chairing an initiative to investigate a new business opportunity, they may well be easygoing.

Colleagues you work with

One of the most common reasons employees quit their jobs – pandemic or not – is dissatisfaction with interpersonal relationships at work. If there’s a team member (or boss) that’s making your life miserable, a year of limited contact via video screens may have been a blessing. With the return from work in person and a greater likelihood of conflict, now may seem like a good time to leave. But before making the unilateral decision to quit, it’s worth considering whether you might be reassigned to a new project or team (maybe you could even suggest one, if you see a need or need. opportunity emerge). According to the journalist Brad Stone, Amazon has adopted the policy of allowing employees, even newly hired, to change jobs within the company at any time, “so that they can always escape a bad manager.” Other companies may begin to feel competitive pressure to adopt similar policies.

Money

Money is not a panacea. If you have a particular problem that makes you want to quit your job, such as working with an abusive coworker, you need to deal with it directly. After all, a raise doesn’t matter much if you’re miserable every day. (And studies show many professionals would even be ready to sacrifice income for more flexibility in other areas, such as remote work.)

But sometimes the money is the problem. If you feel like you are underpaid, or if you have gained new skills or experiences that make you particularly marketable, or if there is a particular life goal that you feel is urgent (such as earning enough to buy a house), a raise may have to leave your job. As is always the case, it’s important to ask your question thoughtfully, making a reasoned argument about the value you add to the business and why a pay raise is deserved.

As a general rule, it is advisable to avoid ultimatums, which may appear to be intimidation or manipulation. But if you really plan to leave otherwise, it helps to be transparent with your employer. “I would love to stay in the business,” you might say, “but I decided now is a good time to buy a house, and for the numbers to work I know I need to earn extra X per year. I don’t know if it’s possible here, but I wanted to at least check it out because I really hope we can make it happen.

Sometimes quitting a job is clearly the right decision. But if you are generally satisfied, except for a specific issue, it is worth contacting your manager before taking any action to leave. We’re in the midst of a post-pandemic realignment, and employers – eager to retain talent – are much more likely than usual to make exceptions and partner with you to think creatively about options. By raising these questions strategically, you give yourself the best possible chance of making your current job work for you, without the stress and hassle of having to leave if you don’t really want to.

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