The Importance of Not Being Afraid to Resign from Your Job

by Stacy Pursell, The VET Recruiter®

I’m going to present a series of facts in a logical order, all for an intended purpose. All of these facts are pretty much indisputable. Here we go:

  • We are in a candidates’ market, with plenty of opportunities for job seekers and candidates.
  • There is a scarcity of top candidates in many industries, including in the Animal Health industry and Veterinary profession.
  • People are changing jobs more frequently in this current job market, driven in large part by the habits of the Millennial Generation. On average, professionals are changing jobs every three to five years. However, some are changing jobs as frequently as every 18 months to two years, and those people are not being labeled as “job hoppers.”
  • When you decide to accept an employment opportunity better than the one you have, you must resign from your current job in order to do so.

More people are changing jobs more frequently than ever, quite possibly than ever before in our nation’s history. That means more people are resigning from jobs than ever before. That means YOU have probably already resigned from at least one job in your career and may resign from more before you begin drawing your retirement checks.

If you are a member of the employment marketplace, resigning is inevitable. In fact, it’s almost as inevitable as death and taxes. Unfortunately, for some people, it’s nearly as much fun as those two things (sarcasm).

A case study in fear

I help professionals find new job opportunities in the Animal Health industry and Veterinary profession. As a result, I also help them to make the transition from one job to another. Lately, I have noticed a troubling trend beginning to emerge. That trend is this:

I’m seeing a lot of candidates who are afraid to resign.

I’m talking about candidates who have already interviewed with another organization, they have impressed the hiring manager of that organization, and they are on the short list of candidates under consideration. In fact, it’s almost a foregone conclusion that they will be offered the position. However, they’re having second thoughts about moving forward. The reason? You guessed it—the fact they might have to resign. I have a recent case study that illustrates this trend.

The boss of one of my candidates has a bad temper. Consequently, she was afraid to resign, almost to the point where she did not move forward and take another position because she was experiencing fear about turning in her resignation. Keep in mind that she didn’t fear the actual act of changing jobs or the uncertainty of the new position. She was afraid of her soon-to-be former boss.

Specifically, she was afraid that if she submitted her resignation, her boss would (predictably) lose his temper and become angry and then she would not actually resign or leave her job. She would stay with her current employer, basically against her will because of fear.

Plenty of points to make

As you can see, there are plenty of points to make about this case study:

  • If the candidate is this afraid of her boss and his temper, isn’t it obvious that she’s making the correct move in pursuing another employment opportunity? I believe the answer that question is a resounding “Yes!”
  • If the candidate submits her resignation and changes her mind because her boss loses his temper and gets angry, when will she ever leave the organization? After her boss retires or leaves the organization himself?
  • By being afraid to resign because of her boss’s temper, the candidate is actually giving control of her life over to someone else. She is essentially allowing someone else to make her life’s decisions for her.
  • If the candidate allows fear to hold her back from going after the things that she wants, including a new job, that will become a habit. Next time, it will become easier for her to allow fear to hold her back. If you want to enjoy rewards, then you must take risks . . . even if that means the risk of making someone angry. You can’t please everyone and you have to do what is best for your career and your family.

As many of you already know, there’s an acronym that I like to use when it comes to dealing with fear. It’s a good acronym to use so that fear doesn’t keep you from moving forward. That acronym is:

Fear = False Evidence Appearing Real

Fear can appear very real, but in many cases, that fear is false. That’s the case when it comes to finding a new job or making a career change. And that was the case in this particular situation.

In my time as a recruiter, I’ve seen the right way and the wrong way to do just about everything related to the employment marketplace. And that includes changing jobs. Here is the right way:

  1. When you accept another organization’s offer of employment, you are giving your word and making a commitment that you’re going to work for that organization. It’s not a “maybe,” it’s a “will be.”
  2. After accepting the offer, submit your resignation in written form and give your notice. As I mentioned earlier, that timeframe should be about two weeks.
  3. Do NOT accept a counter-offer from your employer if one is made after you submit your resignation and give notice. I have written numerous times about the dangers of accepting a counter-offer and the damage that it can do to your career.
  4. Do NOT accept another organization’s offer after you’ve accepted this organization’s offer.
  5. Work out your two weeks to the best of your ability and prepare for your exciting new career move.

You are going to change jobs multiple times during your career. You might have already changed jobs multiple times. More changes (and more resignations) are on the way. When the time comes to change jobs, be bold and be confident.

Submit your resignation, give your notice, and don’t allow fear or anything else to stop you from going after what you want and reaching your goals.

We help support careers in one of two ways: 1.By helping Animal Health and Veterinary professionals to find the right opportunity when the time is right, and 2.By helping to recruit top talent for the critical needs of Animal Health and Veterinary organizations. If this is something that you would like to explore further, please send an email to stacy@thevetrecruiter.com.

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