It usually takes me a lot of time of thinking before taking the step to change. For me, change is always associated with a shift of an original plan that I have set and I usually respect my plans.
When I speak about change, it is related to all aspects of life: career, personality, behavior, relationships, vacations, friends, family etc.
So whenever I think about modifying a plan already set or shifting or changing a complete direction, I spend a lot of time to consider all possible scenarios “if… then…” and I prepare myself to all potential consequences of that change. It took me once two years of complete silence to contemplate the change I have decided to make and to re-plan my next steps.
As part of a career, change of jobs is an important aspect for growth on both personal and professional levels. Leaving a job should not be an easy decision to make but there should be some signs that should guide you towards leaving. I am someone who encourages people to keep trying and not give up. But when the signs tell you to leave, you are not giving up. You are letting go and changing your direction to move forward.
Here are some signs that I have learned that told me that this is the right time to let go so I can be able to grow and move forward:
When you are no longer passionate about what you are doing: The moment you feel that you are going to the office just because you have to, leave. Passion is important in a career path. A job should be enjoyable and should take you to a higher level so that you feel you want to give more and more. It should be rewarding, not only financially but also on the personal and growth levels. When you are no longer advancing and you reached a peak, leave.
When negativity prevails: If you work in a negative environment, around people who can’t stop complaining and nagging, leave, especially if this affects you and drains your passion away. Unless you can fight their negativity or spread your positivity, do not lose your time in a pathetic working environment.
When your identity gets lost among your colleagues and you become one of the minions in the company: A job is part of your identity, of who you are and what you aspire to become. Do not lose your time in a company doing exactly what everyone else does and repeating the same over and over again for the benefit of a larger management system that sets limits to your growth and doesn’t allow you to step out of your desk. You are not a minion. Even though they are cute and funny, they only operate based on orders given without thinking. Be a mastermind. Think and have your own ways to operate, even if you might make mistakes; this is normal. If you make a mistake, think about resolving the issue. There is always a way towards success.
When your manager is bossy: Never lose your time taking orders from a bossy manager. Once during a meeting with external visitors, one of the managers knocked on the table, pointed her finger towards me, gave me a sign to come closer and gave me orders in a bossy way to do something for her. I remained calm especially in front of the visitors, even though I do not appreciate people who don’t call my name and I find it disrespectful; but in exchange, I gave my poker face ignoring her and her orders and she kept looking at me waiting to do what she wanted and that never happened. I am not the exemplary employee and maybe my advice here can put your job at risk, but is it worth to spend your day around people who think they are more powerful just because of their job title? Take your time to think about that.
When people around want to see you failing, even if you are not giving them that pleasure: Not everyone at work appreciates what you’re doing, even if what you are doing falls also under their benefit. I may not have the understanding why people do that and try to break your wings when you are succeeding and lifting the system up. But whenever people try to stop your plan of success and obstruct you from doing the right thing that can really save their jobs too, leave and let them deal with their plan towards failure.
When the right support is absent: If the management does not care, leave. As simple as that. Working in an environment where nobody cares about giving you a hand when you need to or doesn’t push you towards giving more or doesn’t guide you towards a better approach, leave.
When your reputation and your career are at stake: Do not work in an environment that can put your reputation at stake. If people around you are making mistakes, treating customers in a disrespectful way, stealing, lying, breaking all rules, leave. It is like a political system: even if you have one or two decent representatives in the authority, if the political system is corrupted, people tend to generalize and say that the whole system, including the decent persons, is corrupted.