“Sir Sonnie, when is the right time to quit my job“
I’ve been asked this question multiple times by people who are on crossroads. As always, I respond by saying “it depends on your purpose and your unique situation”
There’s nothing wrong if quitting is part of your vocabulary, In fact I quit my job four times in my adult life, for various reasons. The first one, I offered my resignation for integrity reason and the second, as a consequence of being in the middle of office politics. The third one, for a new adventure as an executive in a new company, and the last, when I pursued solopreneurship
I Quit My Job For Personal Integrity
It’s HARD to leave a position of influence and the perks that goes with it. But when your values and self worth is at stake, it’s better to chose the latter over whatever you might lose. These can be applied in two ways
- When you can’t keep a promise or commitment-
In every job we accept (and office we hold), there are expectations that goes with it in the form of deliverables, conduct and behavior. This is our part of the bargain. If we cannot keep it, we should have the strength of character to offer our resignation, if for whatever reason, we fall short of those expectations.
- When personal values is in conflict with the organizational culture-
Though this is subjective because we have different threshold, but when you’re asked to do something illegal, you gotta think real hard.
At this stage of my career, I learned how character can lead you to the top, and bring you down too.
I Quit My Job As A Consequence Of Office Politics
Politics is a neutral word, however, because of power play, office politics developed a negative connotation. Negative office politics is the “non value” adding use of influence and authority to get what you want. One of my major mistakes as a young professional is to let my stupidity to get the best of me. Because I wanted to be a manager by the age of 26, I got involved in a nasty situation. Needless to say, quitting your job is the most honorable way to own up to your mistake, whether intentional or not.
In this period of my career, I learned how office politicking can backfire.
I Quit My Job For A New Adventure
I stayed with this employer for 10 years and because of them, I became a Senior Human Resource Manager. The culture in this company is tough, thus, my corporate leadership and management skills were honed and developed. So when I was offered an Assistant Vice President position by another group, it was not easy. It’s hard to leave friendships and the people who mentor you, behind. But the opportunity offered space and time for myself to do what I want, and with that, the economic benefits too.
I accepted the offer, gave this company more than 30 days to look for replacement, did my work as if I am not resigning. Then I said my thank you’s to all executives that I worked for, and to the people I worked with. I did not burn bridges, instead kept the friendship up to this day.
I Quit My Job To Pursue Solopreneurship
This is my last employment, thanks to this company, I got a taste of what it is to be an executive, and working “directly” with the owner. The shorter workweek gave me more time and space to play with my interest. And this resulted to a burning desire to work for myself and start something from the scratch.
It’s equally a hard decision, at the beginning, I can’t even get wifey to support my plan. Leaving the convenience that perks and good salary brings is damn harrrrd. But at certain point, I got to make a choice- work for someone else for the rest of my life or create something from nothing. This quotation fueled my decision.
A person working on his vision is a leader, else he becomes a manager to fulfill a leader’s vision – G. Goel
Wifey eventually agreed, and off we go for a “real” adventure. In my case, life started at 40.
Is Entrepreneurship For Everyone?
No it’s not. Most people are comfortable working for someone else, and they are no lesser than those who chose to go the entrepreneurship way. However, those who have an inkling to go the start-up way, this resignation video of an employee from Google may interest you. Leaving a company such as Google, at a glance, is stupid. But check out his reasons.
According to Michael Peggs, he did this because:
You are the CEO of your life. The decisions you make today will set the course of things to come. Do something today that will pay dividends down the road. I read once that you should do one thing every day that scares you. I can’t remember the last time I pushed past my limits.
What I know now is that you’ll never reach your potential until you assume some level of risk.
It doesn’t have to be your job, but leave something behind starting today. Stop settling for what’s good enough and make room for what’s great.
Michael, will learn what most start-up entrepreneurs experienced- fall face-down on his face, before a semblance of greatness is achieved. But every step is definitely satisfying if not outright rewarding, and the pain and challenges is worth it.
There are different reasons why people quit their job. You can take the cue from them but at the end of the day, it will be your call.
Do you have interesting experiences about quitting your job? Speak up and spark a conversation.
Founder of LODI Inc. (Learning and Organization Development Institute, Inc.) and Co-Founder of Blogwatch. Mentor and Dad of 2 Gen Z Professionals.
Advocate of #HRinHR (Human Rights in Human Resources) and #DigitalCitizenship
Strategist for Talent, Culture & Content Development, and Cyber Wellness Initiatives
Keynoter and Facilitator of Workplace and Life Learning
Blogging since 2004.