leaving a job

Is it time to move on?

Horror stories and accolades can sometimes serve the same purpose in life. It's human nature to remember the crappy things that happen and the canonize the great things, which isn't so bad if you think about it. Every time you (constructively) complain about a co-worker or system or what-have-you, you're building up a subconscious list of what you see as issues that can be improved. The same can be said of the positive experiences that you rave about -- you're building a list of things that worked for you.

A crappy boss can make your life miserable. They can make you feel small, unwanted and overall unhappy in your job (if not your life in general). If you have a crappy boss, life can seem pretty grim. The most important thing to do is keep building yourself up and building that list of behaviors or techniques that you don't like because they'll serve you well in the future.

Speaking of the future, before you lose your mind to stress and impulsively quit, figure out what's so crappy about the boss. Is it their techniques, personality, the culture of the department or just the company itself? I always think a good rule of thumb for how you feel about a job can be seen in your fantasies for quitting. Do you want to make a big stink or slink away? Do you want to stay on good terms or make sure everyone knows how miserable you were? 

Once you have an idea of why you're unhappy, start looking for a new job that will make you happier -- but don't let anyone in your current company know. And try to stay positive. The more you let things roll off your back like water rolls off a duck's back, the happier you'll be. Focus on your new opportunities and try to exist with what's making you unhappy.

At this point, I also think it's important to state that there are a lot of people you've probably been (constructively) complaining or ranting to for awhile. Buy them all some coffee or a beer or give them a hug. They deserve some appreciation for helping you reflect and move forward!

As things start to look up and you get that new amazing job as an ice cream tester at Ben & Jerry's (or wherever else you go), don't leave in a sour or rude way. Stay above the fray and stay professional -- forget your fantasies of quitting with a huge song and dance number and just submit a letter of resignation.

You'll take your classy style, happier life and good thoughts with you when you leave the job for greener pastures. You'll also have that list of constructive complaints that you built up with your time at the last job. Leave the emotion of them with the past and use the objective facts to make yourself a stronger leader and colleague.

Did you hate how your last boss was dismissive? Or how they focused on the end product over the process? Make sure you're appreciative in your new role and focus on the details of workflows. Never lose an opportunity to grow or improve yourself by learning from a crappy boss just because they are crappy!