Making the decision to leave a job is not an easy thing to do. The “comfort zone” is named as such for a reason and the idea of leaving it is, inevitably, daunting. But if you find yourself watching the clock all day every day, constantly counting down to the end of the day and/ or the weekend, it could well be time for you to make a move.
Here are some of the most tell-tale signs that it’s time to up sticks:
You dread going to work
If Sunday night rolls around and you are always filled with the same sense of dread at the thought of the start of another week at work, this is a clear warning sign. Everyone gets a case of “the Mondays” every now and again, but if this is a constant feature in your life, this is probably a sign that it is time to look for a new opportunity. Don’t continuously put it down to “just another bad week” if what is really going on is that you have a job that has become a poor fit for you.
There’s no room for progression
It is all too easy to wake up one day and find that you are stuck in your job. This is particularly likely to occur if you still enjoy many aspects of your job and find it to be comfortable. However, whilst it is obviously good to enjoy what you do, your job should enhance your skills and continuously provide you with new challenges and ways in which you can prove yourself. If you aren’t learning anything new and are surrounded by people who are getting promotions and progressing whilst you stagnate and do the same old thing, it’s time to look for something new.
You’ve got no passion for what you do
This can happen even if you still love your company, your colleagues and your boss. You should always have at least some amount of love for what you do: after all, you work to live, you don’t live to work! If you hate the work that you are doing or have become disengaged and disinterested in it, it is time for you to look elsewhere. Passion is a vital ingredient for success.
You aren’t appreciated for the work you do
If you find that you are constantly working hard but receiving no thanks or recognition for doing so, this is definitely not going to sit right. This rings particularly true if others around you are receiving praise, promotions and pay rises, but you are constantly overlooked. If things have been this way for a substantial period of time and you have done everything possible on your part to try and combat it, it’s time to look for a new role with a company that will appreciate you. No-one expects constant praise for every little thing they do, but positive feedback is essential for an employee’s motivation at work.
You’ve got a bad boss that isn’t changing
It is very common for employees to get frustrated with their boss from time to time but, generally speaking, we can get over our gripes after a good vent to someone outside of work. However, if you find yourself working under a manager who continually makes you feel miserable and treats you poorly, you are definitely going to want to look for something new. Bosses do come and go, and some may say that it is better to wait it out until they move on, but this isn’t always the wisest move- particularly if they are liked by upper-management and less likely to be moving on. As well as making you feel miserable every day, you run the risk of them damaging your reputation and career prospects if they take credit for work you have done, speak ill of you to others and blame you for things that have gone wrong.
Your personal life is suffering
If you find yourself having to continually miss out on events and activities with your friends and family because of work, this could mean that it’s time to reassess your situation. If you are constantly working overtime, are tired, stressed and miserable at home and unable to ever get your mind off of work, you need to consider the negative effect your job is having on you and those around you. If your job is having a detrimental effect on your personal life, it’s well worth considering looking for a new one.
Your health is suffering
Above all else, your health and wellbeing is the most important thing, and no pay check is worth sacrificing that for. Work related stress can lead to depression and insomnia, as well as frequent illness. Do not let this happen to you: if you find that your job and/ or your workload is continually so stressful that it is negatively impacting your health over a long period of time, you should consider that this might mean it is time to leave.
You’ve lost faith in who you report to
It can be frustrating (to say the least) if you feel as though you are reporting to somebody who you believe is less knowledgeable or skilled than you are, but the real problem here is a much deeper one. If you find that you cannot trust the leadership decisions that your company makes, this will inadvertently mean that you are living in a continuous state of anxiety. This is not a positive way to feel in the workplace, and what’s more, if your suspicions are correct and your bosses are making the wrong decisions, you could find your job in jeopardy.
You’re out of the loop
If it feels as though you are consistently the last one to know about what is going on at work, this may be another thing that means it’s time for you to leave. If you find yourself being excluded from meetings and struggling to get any one-to-one time with your boss or supervisors, this could be a warning sign. This could point to your bosses seeing you as more of a “body filling a desk” rather than a valuable contributor for the team. Whatever way you look at it, this is bad news for your career and could mean that it is time to go.
The future of the company doesn’t look good
If you have started to notice an increase in things like closed door meetings, upper management departures and the need for management approval on even the most minor of expenses, these could all be signs that the company itself is facing a turbulent time. If you have genuine reasons to suspect that the company, and henceforth your job, might be in trouble, it might be worth considering a move elsewhere. If you leave it too long, you could find yourself competing for roles with your former colleagues!
Remaining in a job that you would be better off moving on from can be detrimental to many areas of your life, particularly (and obviously) your career. If you have given it your best shot and tried every option to improve your situation and are still not seeing any big changes, it might be time to admit that it’s time to move on.
Most companies are keen to keep their team members around long-term and in some cases, if you speak to your boss about how you are feeling, there may be steps that they can take to improve things for you. It could just be that they are not aware of how badly you are feeling. Having said this, don’t let them talk you into anything that you are not completely happy with! Make sure you ask yourself if you are really going to feel that much happier at work in the long term after a slight pay rise or a few additional responsibilities.
If you need inspiration on how to keep your team happy, motivated and with your company for the foreseeable future, you can download our free eBook, which is full of advice on staff retention.
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