I know this is a bad time to think about leaving my job, but I hate it and I don’t think I can stand it much longer. I have a micromanaging boss and some bad coworkers, but mostly I’m just tired of what I do. It’s office work and not very creative. I’ve been trying to stick it out, but I find myself surfing around online all day and I’m afraid that I’m going to get caught and fired before I find something better. Should I stay or should I go?
You didn’t tell me whether or not you are supporting a family, but I’m going to try to answer in a way that would address both situations — stay.
Put down the letter opener, I don’t mean forever. What I do mean is, end it like a man. End it honorably, like an agreement, like a marriage, like any obligation. You need a plan and a timetable, so I am providing you, free of charge, Ruby’s patented 3 Weeks to 2 Weeks’ Notice program:
Week 1: Get some real work done.
On Monday morning for two hours, figure out what you need to accomplish in the coming week to get caught up on your work, or at least close to it. Close your office door or tape off your cubicle opening, turn off your phone. You could even send out a “please do not disturb me from 8-10” email to those likely to disturb you. If your boss gives you crap about it, tell him or her that it’s something you read about in 7 Habits of Highly Effective People and you hope it will help you be more organized. It is likely that your screwing off has already been noted and this explanation will give your boss hope that you are getting back on track and that he or she will not have to fire you. It is false hope, but you don’t have to explain that.
I know what you’re thinking — if you could get yourself to work more you wouldn’t be in this position. The problem was that you weren’t incentivized. Here’s your incentive. After every 2 hours of work you complete, you get to spend 20 minutes on your resume and you get to pick one personal item to take home. Maybe it’s 20 minutes reading an online article about interviewing or maybe it’s 20 minutes of writing out a really flattering description of your current position. By the end of a week, you should have a spiffing resume in progress and a desk drawer or two cleaned out.
At night, it goes without saying, you’re Facebooking, LinkedInning, and hitting the job boards. Hard. But, only at home, where you have time to write carefully compelling cover letters and catch the errors before you hit “Submit.”
Week 2: Hanging curtains in the escape tunnel [Read more →]