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The Wise Old Man
Several years ago, I had a boss-turned colleague. After the company where he owned a major share was acquired, he was no longer my boss. Let’s call him Mr. C. Until today, Mr. C is one of the wisest men I ever met and taught me so much in life and work. In the course of Mr. C’s career, he held MD/ED positions for more 30 years and had numerous stakes in other companies as major shareholders. He also invested in shares, property etc. Mr.C is not an entrepreneur by nature, but he takes calculated risk. It was him who told me that his lifelong investments had failures, but he won 7 out of 10. And those he won were substantially bigger stake. He also said "in business, risk is essential to grow!"
As colleagues, I remember lamenting to him all the negativities about the company and how this company has one of the worst cultures I ever seen after a change in management. He smiled and always said to me…
“if it’s just for work, anywhere is the same!"
What he was trying to imply is:
“The problems that unsettle you now in your current company may be eradicated in the new company you going to join. But very often, new found problems you never possibly anticipate will emerge in the new company after you join.”
Mr. C further advised that:
“The reasons for resigning must be for progression, to learn more and assuming a bigger role, not solely because there are many work related problems in your current company that push you towards resigning. The fact that you cannot even manage the current company problems, what makes you think that you can manage new set of problems in the new company?”
Problems are just everywhere in all companies. It is how you react that matters! Refer to SMOL blog on “It’s how I React that matters”
Reasons for Resigning – Pull Factors
Please do not get me wrong! It is not the intention of this article to go against resigning and looking for greener pasture.
Changes are absolutely necessary in our career, seeking for progression. Being stagnant is the biggest risk that most people are unaware. The essence, however is prior to the changes, we ought to be crystal clear about the reasons, and asked ourselves if we already tuned our mindset to prepare for the change.
Some examples of justifiable reasons for resigning listed as follows:
Very important. The new role needs to provide you with more exposures and more learning experiences. Different stages of your career, requires different exposures. For younger people, do not be overly eager to progress too fast, but that’s not to say that you should be stagnant. Grow yourself, just like any investments at steady upward pace. More haste less speed, is what we always say.
To Be a Manager
I encountered many friends that tell me they are looking for a new job, because they want to be a manager. When I asked them what it takes to be manager, some said a manager must have at least 5-10 years of working experience as engineer or executive. Some said they can be the manager, because are very good at their current job. They can do the job that requires two other colleagues to perform. Hmmm….with aforementioned attributes, you can be a manager, but the kind of manager that only manages yourself without any subordinates!
Before becoming a manager, one must have the mindset of a manager. One must also understand the attributes to be a good manager. Grab and read some books on management. Learn from other managers around you. Observe their strong and weak points. Instilled the positive and filter the negatives. Remember not to think so highly about yourself.
In an ideal company comprise of good management with integrity, a good manager is a leader who put the company interest first, before personal/ department gain. A good manager sets direction, implements systems/rules, manages and motivates their subordinate, so that overall productivity is improved. Unlike what most people think, a good manager is not one that does the 2 or 3 x subordinate jobs, and not one that he can out-work or out performs his subordinate.
If you think you are already capable to be a manager, behave like one and not act like one.
With growing expenses, marriage, house, children etc, remuneration is always important. Those who tell you that money is not important, only passion and job satisfaction are, is pretty much “bull shit” in our current meritocratic society. That being said, money cannot be the sole reason.
Switch from Temp/Contract to Permanent Job
If you are not starting your own company, it is always important to have a full time job for stability and to enjoy the essential company benefits that one deserves rather than a temp one.
Reasons for Resigning – Push Factors
Boss Hates Me
With a boss who pick at you all the time with no valid reasons, probably it’s time to go if you are seeking progression. If your boss is purely biased against you, you will never be treated fairly for any opportunity progression. Unless you are patient enough to wait until he was removed. It can be as long as tens of years? You decide?
No More Job Satisfactions
Your initial reason/mission for joining the current company was already successfully completed. And for a long time, current job has been too routine to fulfil your appetite of constantly improving yourself to achieve greater success. Then it’s time to ponder. But before leaving the company at first instance, do have a heart to heart talk with your superior. There may exist internal opportunities within the company, but in a different role or different department for progression.
Not long after graduation, I worked in a job which required me to constantly perform work onboard offshore rigs, marine vessels, other sites etc at irregular hours without proper timings in meals. I left the company after more than two years due to gastric problems.
Schedules and Timing
E.g. from irregular shift work to normal working hours. Or for reasons of more time for family, children instead of flying non-stop.
Several years back, I had a colleague who quit a job because he needed to be back in Singapore after being located in China for many years. He loves his job in China but his wife is already losing control of their daughter who is in her teenage age of being very rebellious. It’s a pity for him that after he resigned from that job, he was never able to find a job that he enjoyed as much. For what he lost in job satisfaction, his daughter is now in reputable university supported by scholarships.
Going Back to School
Difficult work environment
For this reason, do review your options for staying as describe below.
Options for Staying - Stop blaming for a minute…Review yourself!
Very often, you can find employees who blame the company culture, blame the boss, blame their colleagues, blame their clients, blame their suppliers etc…But they never blame themselves because they are the most perfect, and better than everyone in the company???
Reviewing Yourself….. Ask:
- Is there sufficient communication with your superior about your problems?
- When telling problems to your boss about someone/something, are you careful enough with your words?
- Is your words/tone more finger pointing and blaming, or is it aiming constructively to create greater benefits for the department/company?
- Is your boss really unreasonable or are we not receptive to changes ourselves?
- Is your EQ or your interpersonal skills good? Or are you only work capable individually without being able to cooperate with most colleagues?
- Is there a better way of managing colleagues / subordinates?
- Did we try our best to improve to overcome the problems first, before always seeking for superior assistance at first instance?
- Did we always provide our boss with problems, or we do we also suggest various solutions to problems?
- Did we put ourselves in your boss/management’s shoe, understanding that they may have untold reasons from a management point of view?
- Did we complain for the sake of complaining?