When you're out of work and looking for a new job, just finding a job - any job - seems like the right thing to do. The bills are piling up and even a job that doesn't seem right for you can be a way to earn some money. I don't know about you, but the desperation of looking for a job combined with economic pressure is enough for me to be optimistic about any job offer. We all want to accept the job, even if we aren't sure about how long we will be happy doing it.
So, what happens when you accept a job, hoping that it will be a great opportunity, only to find out that the job is a nightmare. Once the crisis is over and the bills are paid, it becomes harder to be happy with a job you don't like. At that point, it's hard to know if quitting is the only option or if you just need more time to adjust.
Deciding to quit a job you've had for only a month or so is tough. On one hand, if you aren't happy, it's better to know now and find something else. On the other hand, having another short term job on your resume isn't a great idea. Added to that is the hope that once you become more comfortable in the job, it will become easier.
If you're thinking about quitting a new job, here are some things to consider:
Is it just because you're new? - There is a transition period that happens with every job. It takes time to really learn the job, the responsibilities and understand the office. We all resist change to varying degrees, and it may be that the job will become more enjoyable after you've made some friends and feel more like a part of the office. If you think this is the case, give yourself another month or two and see if it gets better.
How do you feel about your boss? - This is a big question. Even though they seemed great in the interview, bosses can be very different in the day to day office environment. If you can't stand the boss and every day is miserable, it might be a better idea to leave. Once you know that you can't live with the boss, there isn't much hope that things will get better.
How about the office politics? - One time, I started working at a company where there had been some dispute about the open position. When I arrived on the scene, I was unaware that one of the other people in the office had been all but promised the job. When the company decided to hire me instead, there was some hard feelings and resentment. At first, I thought I had walked into a hornet's nest and I worried that it wouldn't get better. However, I have good people skills and I understood the situation. If you're in a similar position, it helps to try to build bridges and wait it out. Once the office settles down and they see that you can do the job, the problem might go away entirely.
Can you learn something? - If the position is a step on your career ladder, you might want to weigh how much you will learn from it in your decision making process. Even if you don't love what you do, it can be a step in the direction you want to go. If you think the job could be a stepping stone or you think that it could lead to better things in the future, it's probably worth keeping.
Do you have another offer? - Depending on where you were in your job search, you may have other offers. If one of those seems like it could be a better fit, there is no shame in leaving to take a different opportunity. If you don't have anything lined up, think hard about whether you can afford to be out of work again. The pile of bills that led you to take the job probably haven't changed and leaving could just put you in another position like this one.
Only you can decide what is best for you. If you hate your new job and it's starting to affect your personal life, your health and your family, leaving earlier is definitely better than staying too long. Having a short job on your resume isn't nearly as bad as having stayed at a job for a year or so and left without accomplishing much. If you don't think you can excel in the position, evaluate what went wrong and use the information to find a job that is a better fit for you.
Have you ever quit a new job? Why or why not?