You’ve heard somewhere that everyone comes down with a case of the Sunday blues sometimes – but lately, it seems that you find yourself staring at the clock every weekend evening, dreading Monday’s approach. You’ve tried every positivity and pro-zen trick in the book, to no avail; you hate your job. You start flipping through listings on job boards and wonder if it might be better to cut your losses and move on.
Leaving a job is difficult, even for those who can’t stand their position or the work that they do. But sometimes, even the post-quitting unknown is preferable to dead-end employment in a job you hate. In this post, I’ve listed eight red flags that indicate it might be time – or past time – to leave a negative position behind.
You constantly worry about money.
If you live frugally and still find counting the few pennies you could have saved at the end of the month, it might be time to have a conversation with your boss. If you believe that the work you do deserves a higher level of compensation than you receive each pay period, build a formal argument to posit to your supervisor. Argue for that raise – and if you can’t gain a liveable pay, consider moving on. You may have job security at your current job – but that assurance will begin to feel hollow if you can’t pay your bills and find yourself scraping the bottom of your accounts every month for rent money.
You don’t feel engaged.
If you’re counting the minutes to closing time and dreading your daily task list, you’re likely feeling the effects of employee disengagement. Disengaged employees often don’t believe in a company’s mission, or even believe in the work a company does. For many employers, not paying enough attention to employee engagement can be a fatal mistake. As Rachel Gillett writes in a Business Insider article: “Engaged employees are passionate, creative, and emotionally connected to the mission and purpose of their work, while disengaged employees are indifferent toward their jobs and can destroy a business.” As Gillett suggests, employee disengagement can be destructive for employee and company alike.
I’ve written before about the importance of employee engagement, but it’s worth restating. If you don’t feel engaged in your current position and you don’t foresee your employer making an effort to fix the problem, it might be time to step out.
Your boss is a toxic presence in the office.
As Assistant Professor of Management Meredith Ferguson wrote following her study on employee engagement, “People quit bosses […] they don’t quit jobs.” A single bad supervisor can make an otherwise productive office turn toxic. If your boss sets unrealistic expectations, demeans you, or in any way makes your working experience a daily trial, you need to remove yourself from the situation. The daily stress fostered by a negative working situation can have a real negative impact on employee health – so don’t open yourself to harm by subjecting yourself to an intolerable supervisor. If there doesn’t seem to be hope for change, get out!
You aren’t growing
It can be easy to get comfortable with a certain level of discomfort. Boredom or even career stagnation can become tolerable if an employee resigns themselves to a dead-end position for the sake of a nice salary or easy workday. But opting for a disengaged, uncaring acceptance of the status quo can tank any chances of career development in the future. If you imagine yourself in three years and see yourself doing the same work for the same title and pay, consider moving on. Don’t get complacent with a dead-end career – chase your business ambitions!