I Quit!

Pim
Written by
- 2 min read

I'm done. I'm resigning. I don't feel any purpose. I don't like the values. I'd rather spend time doing something I love in a place I like.

These words were on my mind when I quit my job in 2015. It's been one of the best decisions I ever made. It has led to five plus years of passion, exploration and a shit load of personal development.

Sadly, not many see quiting your job as being a positive thing.

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Influencing the world

There are three important roles in which you can influence the world: as a customer, a shareholder and an employee.

As a customer you inspire change via the products and services you buy. Stop buying from companies that destroy the world. Start buying purposeful brands. Doing that supports change to a better world.

Every dollar is a vote.

If you're an investor - big or small - you can influence the world by buying some stocks and selling others. Do you invest in green technologies and responsible fashion brands? Or do you focus entirely on financial return, and maybe perpetuate a system that’s literally destroying the world?

Every dollar is a vote.

Then there's the often overlooked role of employee. Devoting your time, talent, passion and energy to an organization makes a difference. If the company you work for allows inhumane practices in its supply chain, you're supporting that. If you work for a company that does nothing to solve its gender pay gap, you're keeping that alive.

Whereas, if you work for an organization that actively contributes to a better world, you're supporting positive change. You do good by adding value as an employee.

Every workday is a vote.

To quit, or not to quit

Of course, quitting your job isn’t a luxury everyone can afford. But for most reading this blog, it almost certainly is. But few people realize that 'voting', as an employee, is extremely powerful.

If companies realize they have to be responsible and purposeful to attract talent and flourish, they'll change. If organizations don't take ownership for their wrongdoing, and see loads of people quit as a result, they'll change. If companies repel people because of their toxic work environments, they'll change.

And importantly, you're helping yourself by leaving a shitty workplace. It's like quitting a toxic relationship. It can be hard to do, but the benefits significantly outweigh the downsides.

I'm not advising you to quit your job today. But I am advising you to consider this potentially powerful option to do good for both yourself and the world.

To quit, or not to quit? That is the question.

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Replies (20)

Jeff

Jeff

Interesting, it takes time to realize that you "do not fit" in anymore and that the leadership is just there for their bonuses. I am at the point to quid...

| | 3 | Flag
B

B

I made the decision to quit after having worked for over 10 years for the same company. Toxic environment and too many things that I could not reconcile with my values. After I quit at first I was a bit angry (why should I leave? Why can management that I do not see as honest can stay?) but after also happy. After a few weeks that angry feeling was gone. Best decision ever!

| | 4 | Flag
Margot

Margot

I quit last year and am now helping to set up a new charity for young people. I've now brought purpose into my paid work which for too long felt out of kilter with the rest of my life. It's hard but feels right.

| | 4 | Flag
Kristine

Kristine

I fully agree but! I work for an organisation with values I really respect and that are aligned with my own. The organisation works for a better, more equal and just world - through approaches and people that I value and respect. But I want to quit anyway, office politics, power games, positioning, disagreement over agendas - all that still exist and I am just tired. I wish I could say it's a shitty work place but it's not. It's just me or is it? quitting is complex...

| | 10 | Flag
HelenH

HelenH

Well said!

| | 0 | Flag
Sandy

Sandy

I do feel the same, Kristine. Companies have understood very well their interest in changing their business and the movement is underway. Nevertheless, mentalities take more time to evolve towards more cooperation and a sense of general interest. More inclusion, more new generations with different ambitions will allow in the coming years an alignment between the business and the conduct of that business. We are in a transition phase.

| | 2 | Flag
Linda

Linda

No words needed!

| | 0 | Flag
Dave

Dave

@Kristine,

I find myself in a similar situation. the values of the company speak to me although they are not lively in the company culture anymore as they were 5 years ago. I am working on projects that can have impact on building a better world although they are being done for commercial reasons and not intrinsic desire to have impact and to change our way of exploiting our environment which lead to added value due to is consumer relevance. The truth is that as soon as there is a meaning full opportunity I will not have to think twice. We make quitting complex, I am approaching it by looking at my fears and how they can be managed. I have taken distance, prioritized what is important besides work and engaged in finding that opportunity that will create positive impact instead of spending my energy on unfulfilling work related subjects.

| | 2 | Flag
Alain

Alain

There is at least another way for influencing the word : to be a citizen

| | 4 | Flag
Liesbeth

Liesbeth

Reacting to the first sentence of the article:
And it is also a liberating thought to have so many more ways to influence the world than only as employee, shareholder and customer :-)

| | 1 | Flag
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