Yesterday I was reading an article titled “10 Good Reasons For Leaving a Job”.  It turned out that it’s not about making life choices as I expected, but about how to explain leaving a job during an interview.  It even has a disclaimer informing people that one is not obligated on mentioning how one parted ways with the former employer. Wow!

It gives many constructive tips, including what you should say during an interview.  There are always good and bad reasons for leaving a job.  It would be nice if these good reasons mentioned were truly the reasons why one chose to quit, as opposed to just a story created to impress the future employer.

So how do you decide if you need to quit your job?
(1) Occupational fulfillment

Where do you wish to be in the 3 years?

On our website, we talk about the 6 dimensions of wellness.  Of course, the number one reason when choosing between jobs is to fulfill occupational wellness.  As simple as everybody knows, we want to get a job that can make a difference and give a decent pay.  When considering quitting, what separates directionless mental whining from a solid plan?  Do a research on both career paths – your current one and the new option.  You know much more about your current job than anything out there, it should take a lot more to make you want to quit. List all the reasons on a paper, and drop down the pros and cons of each reason. This can let you objectively decide if it’s a good decision, and it can also give you a clearer view of your thinking process.

(2) Improving financial position

There are 3 things that drive financial positions: climbing up through the ranks, becoming an expert in the field of interest, and selecting a career path that is more profitable.

The field of education can be important, but accumulated experience in a certain field when working in a company can also weigh a lot as well.  If you are planning to quit because of an increase in the starting pay rate, you may want to evaluate how much valuable knowledge you have learned in the current company and how much more you will be able to learn to help in your advancement through the ranks?  Quitting a place means having a fresh start.  That means this value will be reset and will drop to 0.  There must be a lot of other advantages for you to decide to quit.

Many people are professionals.  They have spent their time honing their skills: Doctors, lawyers, mechanics, accountant.  If one is quitting but still staying within the field, assuming to a better position, then we seem to be advancing.  However, you need to weigh this advantage against various other factors, such as security in the new job, fulfillment in your new job, and the perceived loyalty (quitting too many times will give employers a sense that you won’t stay long with them either ).

In contrast, if one is quitting for an entirely new career path, assuming the new job pays better, the major obstacle will be job security.  Your advancement in skill level in the new field will instantly drop to 0.  Think about what that can affect the future for either choice.

Choosing a career path that is more profitable is obvious in the short term.  Our subtopic is improving financial position, which you are guaranteed for now.  But what does that mean in the long run? Are you making sacrifices by taking a job that you like less?  Are you making sacrifices by taking a job that will give you less money in the future because of a lesser promotion opportunity?  Sometimes, improving financial position is not always the only reason for your choices.  Maybe you are happy or unhappy at the current job?

(3) Improving personal accomplishment

“I want to be a doctor.” “I want to be a lawyer.”  Do you truly love this career option? For some, the answer is yes.  If you are not 100% driven to a certain occupation, how do you choose?  Many suggest starting thinking far ahead to what each career path is. But this may not be the best solution because the first step is not to look around but to look within. Start with asking yourself what you want to do, step by step until the finest details. Again, it is very helpful to drop down your thoughts, so that you don’t worry about distraction.

Contributing with your unique skill is likely the biggest source of personal accomplishments.  Be yourself. Go through your personality traits and evaluate your skill set.  Be honest. Make a list of these traits and skills.  This list, not only helps you write a good cover letter and do well in an interview, but also helps you decide if you are right for a certain job or if a certain job is right for you.  How can you put your artistic talent to use?  What about your problem-solving skills?  Don’t forget to analyze where you will likely be in your company in the future (by a certain number of years) based on your skill set. Now you can properly compare and contrast between your current job and what’s out there.

Some people hate their jobs, and there are many reasons why.  Sometimes, the working atmosphere is poor.  Sometimes, you feel that you are not going anywhere.  When choosing whether you should quit, always ask yourself if you would end up in the same situation elsewhere?  A fresh start would help only if the people around you are the source of the problem, or if your career path is not going the way you like.   Throughout this decision path, always explore within you to see if you have the ability to change the situation.  Try to look at each situation from various points of view. Try to improve your workplace atmosphere. If it’s still impossible to solve the problem, then quitting is likely a better option.

At the end, when you can balance your preference on both the financial situation and the personal fulfillment, you will be able to see clearly what you should do.  As long as you have thoroughly explored all your choices, then no matter which decision you make, there will be no regrets, which is our ultimate goal in occupational wellness.


With love,

Cecilia Or

Always Remember Why Inc.

Always Remember W.H.Y.

Be Well, Be Happy, Be You