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Would you talk to your employer if you want to leave?

Jan de Boer
Ranch Hand

Joined: Dec 10, 2010
Posts: 422
    
    1
I just wonder, since I am not searching for a new job at the moment.

But the times I did, I got bad faces from my managers and reproaches that I did not talk to them. Actually just before I got the other job, the latest asked me if I was 'still happy here'. And I told them 'Sure!!'. More precise the last time I left I totally hated my job, and my manager thought his company was the greatest ever, so any other discussion was useless, and it was the easiest response too.
Campbell Ritchie
Sheriff

Joined: Oct 13, 2005
Posts: 39436
    
  28
It's probably a good idea to talk to your employer before you get unhappy enough to want to leave.

They should be used to people leaving. I can remember the days when one had a job for life at the same factory, and a son was expected to follow in his father's footsteps, but that is a distant memory even for us older ranch members. Nowadays people change jobs frequently.

And, what's sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander. Does your employer talk to all staff before he's unhappy enough to ask them to leave? Does your employer try to make you happy working there?

You will of course have to talk to somebody, simply to go through the motions of obtaining a reference.
Jan de Boer
Ranch Hand

Joined: Dec 10, 2010
Posts: 422
    
    1
Campbell Ritchie wrote:It's probably a good idea to talk to your employer before you get unhappy enough to want to leave.



Yes probably, but I mean if you already made the decision. Like 'good manners' to your present employer, even before you have got a new one. I think this is just a 'no'. You have not got a new job yet, and you can endanger your present position by saying you want to leave.

Probably also an indication for team leaders and managers: If the question if the employee satisfied is answered with an unconditional yes, then it's probably an unconditional no. Sure I am happy. Like the pope is healthy until he's dead.
Ulf Dittmer
Marshal

Joined: Mar 22, 2005
Posts: 42291
    
  64
I think you give managers too little credit. Most of them *are* interested in their employees' job satisfaction. Unhappy employees are probably less productive than they could be, and will eventually leave. Hiring new ones is quite expensive in terms of time, money and effort, so reasonable managers will go to some length to prevent that.


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Saurabh Pillai
Ranch Hand

Joined: Sep 12, 2008
Posts: 509
Jan de Boer wrote:You have not got a new job yet, and you can endanger your present position by saying you want to leave.


I agree here. First get a job and then talk to your employer.
chris webster
Bartender

Joined: Mar 01, 2009
Posts: 1777
    
  16

I guess it depends on the organisation and on your relationship with your manager.

If you have a good working relationship, then you ought to be able to talk to him/her about the things you're unhappy about, preferably suggesting ways you'd like to improve things with his/her support. If they say "OK - how can we help?", give them a decent chance to turn things around for you. Managers are people too (well, most of them...) and many managers will genuinely try to help if they can, and they can sometimes come up with alternatives to your own ideas that might make things work better for you. But of course, they are also working within the constraints imposed on them by resources and by their own bosses, so you have to be realistic in your expectations.

But if you don't have that kind of working relationship, or the company is quite obviously not interested in whether you enjoy your work, then I think it's fair enough to look elsewhere without necessarily giving them chance to fire you first. As Campbell says, many businesses these days are quite happy to hire and fire workers at short notice and don't give a damn about how you feel about it, so these organisations have no right to expect any more loyalty or consideration in return.

In the end it's your right (and responsibility) to manage your own career, as you're the one who has to live with the consequences.

PS: Check the small print in your contract, as some companies will expect you to repay the cost of training or relocation expenses etc if you quit too soon!

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Jan de Boer
Ranch Hand

Joined: Dec 10, 2010
Posts: 422
    
    1
chris webster wrote:
PS: Check the small print in your contract, as some companies will expect you to repay the cost of training or relocation expenses etc if you quit too soon!


Well for example, in the contract it says that 'both parties have a one month's notice to terminate the contract'. Hence if I say I am looking for another job, and don't have it, they cán say, well if you feel like that, your contract is terminated at the end of next month. So if I would have the courtesy to say I am trying to get away, I give them the possibility, which should not be morally 'on equal level', but they can, fire me before I have a new employer. Now sorry, but polite or not, that is too much risk.
Campbell Ritchie
Sheriff

Joined: Oct 13, 2005
Posts: 39436
    
  28
Jan de Boer wrote: . . . if I say I am looking for another job, . . .. they can say, well if you feel like that, your contract is terminated . . .
Where are you working? Not in most of Europe, they can't. They know they would be liable for damages for unfair dismissal.
Jan de Boer
Ranch Hand

Joined: Dec 10, 2010
Posts: 422
    
    1
Campbell Ritchie wrote:
Jan de Boer wrote: . . . if I say I am looking for another job, . . .. they can say, well if you feel like that, your contract is terminated . . .
Where are you working? Not in most of Europe, they can't. They know they would be liable for damages for unfair dismissal.


The Netherlands. The above is literally in my contract. This is a temporary contract for 6 months. You can have 3 times a temporary contract before the company is obliged to give you a permanent position. After that you have more protection yes. But mostly the first 2 or 3 years you are in this position. Also, unfair dismissal? And then what? The thing is, companies can afford to pay expensive lawyers, you cannot. So even, if you are right, for that you are always in the worse position. For the latter I have bought a sort of juridical insurance, that pays for my lawyer in such conflicts, yes after negative experiences. And no, I don't trust them, sorry.
chris webster
Bartender

Joined: Mar 01, 2009
Posts: 1777
    
  16

Jan de Boer wrote: The thing is, companies can afford to pay expensive lawyers, you cannot. So even, if you are right, for that you are always in the worse position. For the latter I have bought a sort of juridical insurance, that pays for my lawyer in such conflicts, yes after negative experiences. And no, I don't trust them, sorry.


It's similar here in the UK, although we have no right to be offered permanent jobs eventually if we work under temporary contracts.

Have you thought about joining a trade union? Here in the UK, you can join a union as an individual, and they can often provide a lot of useful advice on dealing with situations like this - and they have their own lawyers. Also, does your workplace have an official trade union representative? If so, you could talk to them. Also, when I worked in Germany, they had the Betriebsrat - the works council - which had employee representatives who could advise on these issues. Do you have anything similar in your workplace?

Finally, it sounds like you neither like nor trust your current employer (no doubt with good reason) so maybe you really should just find another job and get out of there!
Jan de Boer
Ranch Hand

Joined: Dec 10, 2010
Posts: 422
    
    1
chris webster wrote: Finally, it sounds like you neither like nor trust your current employer (no doubt with good reason) so maybe you really should just find another job and get out of there!


Nee, it more general. I don't like all employers. Or at least I am aware that employees and employers have some common but also some conflicting interests. I don't (dis)like my present employer more then I (dis)liked my previous ones.
chris webster
Bartender

Joined: Mar 01, 2009
Posts: 1777
    
  16

Jan de Boer wrote:Nee, it more general. I don't like all employers. Or at least I am aware that employees and employers have some common but also some conflicting interests. I don't (dis)like my present employer more then I (dis)liked my previous ones.


Sounds like you need to cross over to the Dark Side and become a freelancer instead.
Campbell Ritchie
Sheriff

Joined: Oct 13, 2005
Posts: 39436
    
  28
chris webster wrote:. . . As Campbell says, many businesses these days are quite happy to hire and fire workers at short notice and don't give a damn about how you feel about it, . . .
Did I really say that? I don't think I meant it that way. I agree there are lots of employers who hire at short notice, but they usually advertise the posts as short duration, so both parties know where they stand before they start.
Yes, there are some employers where the employees are all unhappy. That is usually because of incompetence rather than malice.
Jan de Boer wrote:The thing is, companies can afford to pay expensive lawyers, you cannot.
But they are still expensive. They know £50000 spent fighting a single dismissal case means one senior person less for twelve months, or no bonus for the entire management team. So employers prefer not to litigate. Least of all if the defendant can obtain legal aid, because then there is no prospect of getting costs back.
chris webster
Bartender

Joined: Mar 01, 2009
Posts: 1777
    
  16

Campbell Ritchie wrote:Did I really say that? I don't think I meant it that way. I agree there are lots of employers who hire at short notice, but they usually advertise the posts as short duration, so both parties know where they stand before they start.
Yes, there are some employers where the employees are all unhappy. That is usually because of incompetence rather than malice.

Sorry for putting words in your mouth, Campbell! But recent developments here in the UK IT industry would certainly suggest there is no shortage of employers who are indeed quite happy to fire employees in their thousands, regardless of their performance or past loyalty, and replace them with cheap imported staff or offshore workers. It's not incompetence, these are major businesses taking deliberate actions that often feel pretty malicious to those on the receiving end. Even those who survive the outsourcing/offshoring are often pretty bitter and unhappy by the end of the process. This may be a separate issue from Jan's original post, but from what I've seen it's certainly a significant factor in generating considerable distrust between employers and employees.
Jan de Boer
Ranch Hand

Joined: Dec 10, 2010
Posts: 422
    
    1
To add to that. Of course your market position adds to your trust. I mean, if they could possibly fire you, but you then can get a job easily, and they cannot easily find a replacement, yes then it is not such a danger to tell your employer you want to leave.

But there is little to win, and much to loose to do this. The only thing to win is that you have increased your liability, because you have been honest to your employer. But to loose, there is much more. If you get sacked, or your temporary contract is not extended, you are in deep deep trouble, in a bad economy. You probably also would get a shift in tasks. For anything you might learn from, is not used by the company anymore also. Doing a new project in a new technique is not an option for your manager.
Joshua Mccartney
Greenhorn

Joined: Apr 25, 2012
Posts: 26
As usual, if you don't talk to and you leave without any further reason they will just think that you're so irresponsible. Talk to them even if you hate your employer.


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