Not all work environments are easy. Even the best companies sometimes end up having a toxic work environment. You may walk out of your job for several reasons.
Quitting a job is never easy, no matter how difficult things might become. It might also affect your physical and mental health if you continue like this for a long. Most importantly, you often have to choose between your finances or continuing to work in rugged surroundings.
Hence, when you decide to leave your job, you need to think about several things to ensure that you do not regret your decision later. Suppose you still feel you need to quit your position after a week of careful consideration. In that case, you need to consider what you should do before finally handing in your notice.
Give it some time and think it over.
You must ensure that when you decide to walk out of your job, it will not cast a shadow on your prospects. Remember that you will quit your job for a fresh beginning, and you must do everything possible to make the process seamless.
Reasons You May Have to Walk Out of Your Job
There might be one or several reasons you may choose to walk out of your job. Since you spend about one-third of your day at your workplace, spending so much time in an unsatisfactory and unfulfilling environment will soon leave you discontent.
Identifying the reasons will allow you to justify why it is essential to walk away.
1. You feel Unsafe
Feeling unsafe in the workplace has plagued many employees in the past. Maybe your workplace is in a part of a town where you are not comfortable commuting, especially after dark. Or, you might be forced to work with outdated equipment, and you fear getting injured.
Or maybe, as a female employee, you do not feel comfortable about the gender bias at work. These are adequate reasons you may feel unsafe and decide to quit your job.
Bonus Read: How to Protect Yourself From Toxic Coworkers: 7 Mental Strategies and Tips
2. Your Job is Not Fulfilling
You may have done so when you joined your current position, assuming you have finally found something you are passionate about. However, a few months into the job, you discover that the job description was way off the mark.
You have to keep yourself busy with mundane tasks, and you do not see yourself growing. If you have plans to see yourself somewhere in the next three to five years and feel that your present position will not get you there, you may think of quitting.
3. You are Not Adequately Compensated
You might have agreed to a pay package when you joined a company. However, since then, the pressure at work might have steadily increased, and you find they do not compensate you for the extra hours or effort you put in.
While there is additional pressure at work from time to time, if this becomes a norm, then you are being exploited at work. Your appeals for increment have been turned down, and they often force you to work overtime at a bare minimum.
You might get out of this scenario as quickly as possible and looking for opportunities that pay what you deserve.
Bonus Read: How to Politely Ask Your Boss For Your Salary? (With Examples!)
Things You Must Do Before Walking Out of Your Job
You cannot just stop coming to your work one day, although that might seem like a very tempting prospect. When you finally decide to leave your job, here are some things you must consider.
1. Go Through Your Contract
You must first go through your employment contract when you decide to leave your job. Is there any clause that says that you have to meet certain conditions before you can quit? What about the labor laws in your state?
Was there any NDA that you had signed while joining? What is the duration of the notice period that you have to serve before quitting? It would be best to consider these factors before leaving so that you do not have to go through any legal problems later.
2. Make Way for a Smooth Transition
You must update all your work and complete all your tasks before walking out. You might not want to work with the company anymore, but they had given you employment, and you owe them that.
Ensure that the next person who comes into your place does not meet with a backlog of work. You may need your previous employers again for recommendations or other reasons, and you do not want to leave a negative impression.
Bonus Read: 8 Must Things to Do on Your Last Day of Work
3. Clean Your Work Computer
No matter how long you have spent in a particular organization, you may have used your work computer for some of your work at some point. Hence, clear the search history and cookies from your work computer while leaving your job.
You may have just looked up some shopping sites or spent some personal emails, but even then, you must remove all traces of your work from the work computer.
In addition, you must also return any equipment you have acquired from work, like mobile phones or computers. They were meant for use only for as long as you were with the organization, and you must return everything before leaving.
4. Use All Your Leaves
Depending on the company policy, you may not incash the leaves if you have not used them. While some companies will compensate you for all the days you have worked without taking your casual leave, in some other companies, they might go to waste.
Hence, taking all your leaves before you quit is a good idea. You can also use this time to ponder your decision, take some time off, and relax.
5. Manage Your Finances
One of the most important things you must do before you hastily decide to walk out of your job is to manage your finances. Whether you like being in your present company, it has been your principal source of employment, and quitting your job will impact your monthly income.
Hence, ensure you have enough savings to sustain yourself before getting another job. It would be prudent for you to look for another job and even secure one before you walk out of your present job.
6. Speak to Your Mentor
Before making a significant decision, like quitting a job, discuss it with a close friend or a mentor. They may help you address your concerns and even help you stay at your job longer. This is essential since you may miss out on nuances while quitting your job.
Speaking to a mentor will help you look at the matter from another perspective. You need to make sure that you are indeed making the right decision, and someone more experienced will give you a better look at the impact this move will have on your career.
How to Explain to A Prospective Employer Why You Decided to Quit?
Considering all the circumstances, you have finally made an informed decision that you want to walk out of your job. Now, the time has come to explain to your employers the reasons for doing so.
Here is how you should ideally go about it.
1. Be Professional
When explaining to your employer why you had walked out of your previous job, it is imperative to be professional. Do not speak ill of your previous employer or your workplace. It will show prospective hiring managers that you know how to take unfavorable situations in your stride and not dwell on them.
This can be excellent in a candidate who prefers focusing on the future rather than dwelling on the past.
2. Avoid Intricate Details
There is no need to go into the intricate details about what made you unhappy at your previous workplace. You could say that you had a different opinion of the management or that working conditions were not as expected and made you feel unsafe.
Unless you are specifically questioned, do not share details that might portray your previous employer in a bad light. It will show good judgment and your employers will know that you are courteous enough, even if you are not associated with the company anymore.
3. Focus on What You Learned
While interviewing for new jobs, there will come the point when you would have to talk about quitting your previous job. In such a situation, focus on the positives of the job rather than the negative aspects.
Speak about your accomplishments and what you have learned, and say that you want to put all that skill to good use and move forward at a job that also leaves you fulfilled and satisfied.
Most employers will not want to go into unnecessary detail. They will be more interested in knowing what you can do for them in the future, so this would be an excellent approach.
Walking out of a job is one of the most challenging things ever. Unless you have been working in a very toxic environment, quitting your job is never easy. You leave behind your colleagues who have become friends over time, and you start your journey ahead with dread in your heart.
Yet, the only thing you can do is keep moving forward, and if you feel that walking out of a job means a better future, do what is best for you. It could help you avoid stagnation and open new doors of opportunity.
Once you have considered all the pros and cons, make an informed decision that can improve your career.