No, quitting before you are fired is not always a good idea.
Whether quitting your job is better than getting fired depends entirely on your current professional scenario. If you feel there are more advantages to quitting than getting fired, you may resign.
However, sometimes, you may wait until you get fired before leaving an organization. It is true that getting fired may feel demoralizing and also embarrassing. But that is not your fault.
Many employees get fired due to management reasons, and that should not make you question your value as an employee.
The idea is to find a balance based on some signs you may have seen. You have to be alert if you see a lot of changes taking place around you.
However, if you have already decided that you will start over in another city or want to change industries, you can wait until you get fired because there are certain advantages to that as well.
It is imperative you plan carefully for the future. You should always plan for a contingency. That will prevent you from making hasty decisions, and you cannot afford to be reckless with your career or your finances.
How Do You Know You May Get Fired?
Unless your employer fires you, some signs can tell you that you could be fired.
For example, has your company been downsizing lately? The management might have nothing against you, but they may fire you because they want to cut costs. If you see your coworkers have been fired, you could also be next in line.
Another scenario might be that you could be getting repeated warnings about your work. If you have made some mistakes lately and your employer is very rigid, they may fire you.
Of course, you will get some time to correct your errors, but if you feel that your employer is doing it out of a toxic nature, it may happen sooner or later.
What Can You Do If You Think You Are Going To Be Fired?
A few things you can do in case you might feel to be fired.
1. Speak To Your Boss
You may talk to your boss and tell them you have a doubt about your future in the company because of certain signs you noticed. In most cases, your boss will be direct and tell you that you are going to lose your job. Or, they will reassure you that you are not going to be among those they may fire.
You can request your boss to wait and allow you to resign if that is what you want. Unless the employers are in a hurry to fire you, they will respect your wishes.
2. Join A New Organization
Start looking for a new job the moment you feel you may be terminated. However, no one likes to come across as insecure. So don’t talk to your boss about it if you don’t want to.
Take some time off instead. Think about your passions. Start looking for an organization that best reflects those needs, and start over if you have to.
3. Ask To Be Laid-Off
If you think being fired will look bad on your resume, you may ask your boss to lay you off instead. Your employer may not agree to it because of company policies or regulations.
And yet, you can talk about how to make it happen so that it does not hinder your chances of being employed in the future. A lot depends on the rapport you share with your boss as well.
When Should You Consider Quitting Instead Of Waiting To Get Fired?
Once you have noticed some signs that have raised the doubt that you may be fired, you may think about quitting before you are terminated. However, it is not easy to arrive at a decision quickly in such matters. These points can help you decide.
These points can help you decide.
1. Your Current Position In The Company
You have to consider what is at stake if you consider quitting at a point in your career, with your current position in the company.
Are your finances in order so that even if you quit, you will have enough to support yourself till you find another job? Or will you have to depend on unemployment benefits, which will be affected if you quit?
Moreover, if you haven’t completed two years in the company and decide to quit, future employers may see you as someone who hops from job to job. Stop to consider if it will still be the best move for you.
On the other hand, companies will think twice about letting you go if you are a senior employee in the organization. You can use this as leverage, and even if the company decides to terminate you, you can resign with a better severance package.
2. Mental Or Physical Health Issues
If you feel your mental or physical health is at stake, you should quit before waiting to get fired. Your health is your biggest asset, and feeling good about yourself will ensure you will get plenty of opportunities in the future.
However, if you feel suffocated in a toxic work environment that is taking a toll on your mind, or your work environment is unsafe because your employer does not follow OSHA regulations, then you should quit instead of waiting to be fired.
3. Your Future Opportunities
If you want to quit your job, consider your future prospects in advance.
Will you get a job quickly based on your experience and qualifications? Will you have to move out of town to get a new job because the job market in your city is saturated? Or would you have to settle for lower-paying jobs because of it?
Think about your passions. Where do you see yourself going from here? Are you comfortable changing industries if you do not like what you find? You should not risk your career for nothing.
4. Your Coworker’s Perception
If you want to quit your present job but want to stay in the same industry, chances are you may often cross paths with many of your professional acquaintances. That would include your coworkers as well.
Are you conscious that they may see you differently if you are fired, and so would rather quit? Even if it means letting go of some of your benefits? Or are you worried that it will hurt your prospects because you must tell your prospective employers that you were fired?
Since word gets around in the same industry, it would be better to state the truth, and you do not have to go into the details if you don’t want to. Moreover, no one will hold it against you if you are fired because of a layoff or downsizing.
However, if you are still concerned that your image could be tarnished if word gets around you were fired, then you can quit.
5. Handling Your Departure
Being fired does not result in a good feeling, and if you want to keep ties with your former company for professional reasons, you may not want to enter into any altercation.
You could quit instead and take your power back by being dignified about your departure. You can offer to train your replacement and ensure your duties are handled. When your employers see you handling everything with such dignity, they might even have second thoughts that they were thinking of firing you.
They could also ask you to stay instead, and you can turn the situation around in your favor.
Advantages Of Quitting A Job
Let us look at the bright side of quitting if you are still unsure.
1. You Are Relieved
While it is necessary to be logical while making a career move, you should put yourself before everything at certain times.
It is wise to always have a plan for the future, but your emotional well-being is everything, and you should do what feels right deep down. There is no point in taking a step that will make you question your future or jeopardize your happiness.
2. You Control The Narrative
When you quit a job, you get the opportunity of doing so on your own terms. That doesn’t mean that you will tamper with the facts of what happened when you interview for jobs in the future, but you can talk about your departure more positively.
The employment benefits can help you take care of your finances for the period you are looking for your next job.
You may also get a severance package. Additionally, you may also be entitled to COBRA medical insurance coverage.
3. Getting Recommendations
If you quit on good terms with your previous workplace, you can get good recommendations from your employers and coworkers. There is nothing to be achieved by burning bridges, and you can also avoid a lot of awkwardness.
If you detect that there would be no significant difference in your benefits when you leave the job, then it might be better to quit rather than be shown the door.
Advantages Of Being Fired
Although being fired from your job does not sound good, it has a few advantages.
1. Unemployment Benefits
This is one of the biggest reasons why people wait till they are fired instead of quitting. Since, in many states, one is not eligible to receive these benefits if they voluntarily resign from a job, employees wait till they are fired.
Or, one must prove that they had to quit for very strong reasons. If you leave the employment voluntarily, you have to consider the possibility you may not get any of it.
2. Documenting Everything
If you quit, your access to the company computers and other databases will be immediately revoked. That is the norm in most companies.
However, if you wait till you are fired, you can use the time to document everything and even gather evidence if you feel that you are being fired unfairly or due to some office politics.
3. Strengthen Your Legal Claims
When you quit your job, you lose the advantage you had to seek compensation for potential damages. Quitting means you left your job willingly, and you may not be able to prove that you were forced to quit or were fired unfairly unless you have sufficient evidence.
Moreover, if you were fired just before you got some financial benefit like commission, pension, or anything else, then you can show that as evidence and improve your case. You cannot do that if you resign.
Whether you will be better off quitting your job or waiting till you get fired is a very subjective decision. You have to account for several factors, and your choice might not seem right a few years later.
However, prioritizing your needs and finances should be your biggest concern, and you should decide which lets you have better prospects. Also, it is best to know your next step before you find yourself unemployed. It will help you arrive at your decision with greater clarity.