It happens to everyone, the inevitable “itchy feet” that comes once you’ve been in the same job for a while and makes you question your future career.
OR maybe it’s the opposite, you’re so thoroughly content in your current role that when another opportunity does come by, you quite happily wave it on.
But when should you actually leave?
We can’t outright answer that for you – only you know what’s best for your career, but we can offer 10 examples of what we’ve found over the years to be good reasons to leave.
1. You’re Constantly Stressed Out. A little bit of stress can be a motivating force in the workplace but too much, too often can leave you feeling less than productive and resentful towards your job. It can also start to affect your personal life and physical health. When this starts to happen, it may be a good time to move on.
2. You Don’t Like Your Boss or Colleagues. And we’re not talking about “oh, that person just annoys me” dislike, but full-blown “I can’t stand that person, they are causing me serious personal and professional issues” dislike. Considering we spend a significant portion of our lives at work, it’s important to get along with the people joining you for the ride.
3. Your Company is Going Under. It might have been admirable for the Captain of the Titanic to go down with his ship, but in the workplace? Not so much. Instead, it could be detrimental to your career.
4. You’re Thoroughly Miserable. If it’s affecting your mental health, it’s time to go.
5. Work / Life Balance Has Disappeared. Often the Millennials get blamed for their almost ‘”extreme” focus on this, but most experts agree that maintaining balance between work and life is extremely important for your health AND your productivity in the workplace.
6. You’re Under Utilised. Maybe you have more skills than your current role requires and you’ve asked multiple times for more responsibility or been passed over for promotion. Whatever the case, if your skills are not being fully utilised, you’re in danger of stagnating and it might be time to find something more challenging.
7. The Multiple Head Hunt Calls. Which you may find annoying – at some point everyone does. But try to not ignore them, they can indicate that the market you’re currently in, or your particular skill set is “hot” and it could be an ideal time to really get what you want for your next career move (and salary).
8. You’re Experiencing ANY Form of Abuse. This is a serious one. If you’re experiencing any form of abuse or bullying, whether racist, sexist, mental or physical, it’s time to go. If it’s serious, involve the police. No one should have to put up with that.
9. Your Salary Hasn’t Increased, but your Duties Definitely Have. On occasion there may be a good reason for this, but in most cases, if you are being lumped with more and more responsibility but aren’t seeing a corresponding jump in pay, title or respect, it could be time to look around.
10. You Simply feel like it’s Time. Whether you’re bored, feel you’re stagnating or don’t have a reason whatsoever, don’t ignore that little voice coming from your gut. If your interest is no longer there, you’re likely to be less productive and subsequently hurt both yourself and the company you work for.
There’s nothing wrong with not being happy with your job, just as there is absolutely nothing wrong with being content in the role you hold. No matter where you sit on the spectrum, with 40 hours a week spent in the workplace, you owe it to yourself to regularly evaluate your career to make sure you’re getting the best possible deal and ensuring your own professional development.
The result may be that you need to find something new, or it may give you a greater appreciation of what you already have.