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Punk Rock HR

Jun 15, 2018

Laurie gets emails all the time with the same question: ‘Should I quit my job?’ She admits right off she might not be the best person to ask; she’s not exactly driven to work. Despite that, she’s been in the HR world for the past 25 years and she’s seen it all. Laurie begins with the first answer she generally gives: Yes. Quit your job. Here’s why.

  • Let’s get one thing straight. You don’t write in asking if you should quit your job for no reason. You’re asking because you WANT to quit your job and you want permission to do it. But in today’s society, we’re expected to ask for advice, to get consensus and validation. Consider this your green light. Stop asking and just go for it.
  • There’s another group of people who actually love what they do but they’re embroiled in wage gaps, #MeToo issues, terrible bosses, and bad work environments in general. It doesn’t seem fair that they have to quit their jobs, but Laurie has some tough love that you need to hear.
  • Maybe your job is craptastic and the only reason you’re in it is that you can’t find another job. Know this: you are not expected to keep yourself in a toxic environment. If you can’t find one job to replace the terrible one, then find two. Do whatever it takes to get yourself out of the toxic situation because it is slowly killing you. It is self-abuse. Stop it! You deserve better.
  • Are you angling toward something more entrepreneurial? Maybe a swim school or frozen yogurt stand? Great! If you’re determined to be your own boss, then bet on yourself. Get a business plan and get to work. But make sure you’re ramping up first. Don’t quite a job and THEN start a company; it’s a recipe for disaster.
  • Are you really struggling with the decision? Then get someone qualified to help you work through it. We’re not talking about some sketchy Internet life coach who is using you to self-soothe their own past. Laurie recommends talking with a psychiatrist or psychologist – no, really! If that’s not an option, check out The Muse. They have certified career coaches to help you take the right steps when you’re ready to quit work.
  • Finally, if you’re determined to quit your job, make sure you take all your paid time off and exhaust every benefit in your employee handbook. Use your health insurance to make sure you’re well; go to the dentist, the eye doctor. While you’re doing this, try to remember why you accepted the job in the first place. What made you say yes? Is it worth leaving? Think through it.
  • Laurie’s final piece of advice is instrumental: expand your network. Talk to smart people. If you truly CAN’T leave your job and it’s a toxic environment, then you need good people around you.

The DIY HR Handbook

Wouldn't you love to get your hands on Laurie's no-holds-barred, honest DIY HR Handbook for employees and pros alike? Download it for free!

Episodes referenced in this podcast:

Eric Barker Episode on being smart about choosing your job

Katrina Kibben Episode on how to ramp up a business

Ben Brooks Episode on democratizing coaching

Scott Stratten Episode on burning down your career

Other links:

The Muse

Unmarketing podcast with Scott Stratten



National Suicide Prevention Lifeline United States

Call 1-800-273-8255 - Available 24 hours every day

Crisis text line: Text CONNECT to 741741 in the United States.

List of international suicide hotline numbers

Workaholics Anonymous

The Forces Driving Middle-Aged White People's 'Deaths of Despair'