Before I dive into the things to consider before you leave a company it is important to realize that having only one out of the ten is not enough to warrant quitting a job; usually if three or more apply to you then it is time to consider other opportunities. Also, it is always better to have a job before you quit; it makes it easier to get offers and keeps your career moving without any breaks. With that said, here is the top ten list of things to consider before you quit your job.
1. Low upward mobility/low growth firm. This means if you work at a firm and most of the people stay in their role for many years and advancement is infrequent then this is not the place you want to be long term; the best strategy is to stay there until you reach the point where it begins to hinder career advancement.
2. Stressed out. Stress can wreak havoc on your health. If you are working too many hours and cannot find a resolution at the company then it is time to pack up and go to a company where you can still have an impact without ruining your health.
3. Low Pay. Let me start by saying sometimes taking low pay is ok when you are new to an industry or trying to break in but at some point you should get your just due. If after gaining experience your pay is still below market then it is time to go.
4. Strain on your family. I believe in strong family values and if your job is constantly keeping you away from your kids or significant other then you need to consider other opportunities right away – don’t miss those precious moments or ruin a great relationship.
5. Hate your job. When thinking about this try to examine what things are causing you to feel this way; is it related to work or the people? If it is the work and you have stuck with it for several years then you might be due for a career change. With that said, really think before you change careers because it might negatively impact salary or authority/responsibility.
6. Merger and acquisition. If the company is going through this process it typically means they will be evaluating their workforce needs and will review areas where they see “operational redundancy”. The best thing to do is test the job market just in case things go south and your department or role is cut.
7. Your boss hates you. I now many think their boss has it in for them but when thinking about this it is important to think objectively. It is best to look at things like performance appraisals, project/jobs assigned to and general interactions when compared to co-workers.
8. Cultural Fit. This is a tough on but it boils down to your general feeling about interactions with your boss or co-workers and the overall firm personality.
9. Need to relocate to move up. If your company requires a rotation or many of the most successful people have moved around and you are settled and do not want to move around then you should evaluate local career opportunities – do not be forced to make a decision when you are not ready to do so.
10. Not good at what you do. Simply put if after several years at a firm you still are in low/middle rankings or are slower than your peers in completing assignments it is a sign that either you should change careers or go to a different firm where you can have more success.
A few final notes, before quitting a job it is much better to try to work things out with your employer but realize every conversation you have with your boss will give insight into your probability of leaving which might make things more difficult for you. Also, generally speaking you want to be in a role for 3 years before making a move; it will improve career opportunities as you will have deep experience in one role and hiring managers or Human Resource (HR) professionals will not think of you as a job hopper.
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