Professor's House

Take This Job and Shove It – Quitting Your Job

Johnny Paycheck was definitely not living in a world where worrying about the ‘paycheck’ was all that important. When the song, Take this Job and Shove it, was first released, it quickly climbed up the charts and probably empowered a great many people to take their lives by the horns and tell their boss to stick it where the sun didn’t shine. But honestly, did these people have thousand dollar mortgages, children, car payments, and bills to pay?

According to a report by the The Conference Board, which is a non-profit agency that conducts research for companies to help better management and marketing practices as many as 83% of all working adults are unhappy at work. Yet they continue to stay despite conflicts with the boss, long commutes, stagnant salaries, and other issues that affect job satisfaction. The biggest reason for unhappiness in the work place were issues relating to a lack of training, dissatisfaction with wages and promotion opportunities and personnel issues. The latter probably directed specifically at the boss. In fact, another survey by the same agency showed that as many as 91% of all employed adults over the age of 26 do not like their boss. Whether this is a statement about how we handle authority or not is yet to be answered.

The truth is that when it comes to a job, any job – there will always be plusses and minuses with the job. Even if you are working your dream job, chances are you are going to run into people, authorities especially that irritate you. Perhaps they don’t give you the recognition you deserve. Maybe you feel like they don’t do their job like YOU would be able to do it. They may even be make unreasonable requests and lack common courtesy or respect. The question however is this. Do you take Mr. Paychecks advice and forego one of your own by telling the boss what you really think – or do you bide your time until you can find another job and refuse to burn bridges.

Largely this depends on your status in life. Few people today can afford to go even one month without a paycheck and according to the U.S. Department of Labor, “would be faced with bankruptcy” in a short time. For older adults with families and assets that are more concrete that they are paying for, the percentages are pretty high. For those working individuals under 29, not so much. However, you also have to consider how quitting your job without notice and under some pretty brash circumstances will make you look. If you are interested in getting a good reference or referral, being fed up and walking out leaving a windstorm behind is a ‘bite your nose to spite your face’ sort of action. On the other hand, if it is the boss that is causing you grief, there is a good chance that you will not get an above board reference anyway, regardless of how well you performed, so you at least leave with a personal level of satisfaction that comes from having the last word. Not grown up, but satisfying nonetheless.

The Department of Human Resources which sets standards and milestones for both employees and employers maintains that employees should always try to mend the situation at work before heading out the door in a rage. They advise employees that are unhappy to take their complaints to the next level, look for any laws that may have been broken and even to try and find assistance with whatever situation they feel is not fair. They also advise employers to take names, and make sure that they are able to back up their claims with solid evidence that ‘personnel’ issues are causing them to be treated unfairly at work. This way there is some recourse and you will also be able to quit knowing that your boss cannot hinder your chances of a new job simply because the two of you didn’t get along. In fact, it is considered unfair labor practices to give reviews that are partial to personal feelings.

In order to ensure that this doesn’t happen to you, before you leave work – make sure you get your personnel records. Look at review documents. If you work in a position that is measured by performance, then get the stats on your sales, marketing, or profit. This way you can go to another employer with some solid information that is unbiased.

Additionally, quitting your job when you don’t have another one lined up is not the best idea in this economy. For one thing, when you vacate a position, there are an estimated 30 people who are willing to do your job for less. We are definitely living in an employers market, where they have many qualified applicants who are willing to take anything, just to be employed again. So if you cannot take the boss for a day longer, put on your big girl or boy undies and deal with it! This will definitely work in your favor.

This is not to say then when you do leave, you cannot be honest about your feelings for you know whom. If you want to tell them they are a jerk – then do so, professionally! While the moment you are living in may seem unbearable and unimportant, remember that there is always the chance that the two of you will run into one another again. Perhaps he or she will leave the company as well and come to work at a company where you work. Never under estimate the possibility, especially if you are in a specialized field of employment.

If you are unhappy at work, you aren’t alone! However, use your common sense and try to ensure that you take care of yourself, despite your urges to have a few words with your employer. This is definitely not the economy to just up and quit, without notice. Instead, download the song, Take this Job and Shove it to your Ipod and crank it up while you drive to and from work. If nothing else, it can help to release the stress and pressure that your work life is causing.

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