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Last Updated on November 28, 2017

What to Do When You Hate Your Job (for Both Who Choose to Stay and Quit)

What to Do When You Hate Your Job (for Both Who Choose to Stay and Quit)

If you hate your job, you’re not alone.

A recent U.K. study found that 60 percent of employees were unhappy in their current positions.[1] Whether you have a boss who always reprimands you or a job so dull that you’d rather watch paint dry, being miserable at work is an incredibly frustrating situation.

Is there any way to escape this daily torment?

If you’ve already reached the stage of saying “I hate my job!” then you’ve taken an important first step towards freedom. Admitting that your work is a nightmare means that you’re ready (and hopefully willing) to take action to change your circumstances. As you’ll see shortly, there are several solutions that can help bring your work life into a happier realm.

Before we get started let me suggest that you put aside any preconceived notions of what you might do. Instead, keep your options open and wait until you are drawn to a solution that offers the best results for you.

I hate my job! Give me some solutions to fix this.

Fortunately there are a number of solutions to help you escape from your joyless work situation. We’ll divide these solutions into two categories. The first one will cover solutions that help you stay in your current job but improve your circumstances. The second category will offer you solutions for quitting your job and moving to new pastures.

You hate your job but due to financial burdens or lack of other job offers you’re forced to stay where you are.

Try these five solutions:

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1. Be grateful for having a job.

However much you hate your job, just think of the millions of unemployed people who are desperate to find work. While your job may be far from perfect, it’s still a job. It pays you a wage and offers you a chance to contribute to society.

2. Be honest with your boss.

It may be hard to discuss with your boss the reasons why you hate your job, but it can be worth it. When confronted with facts such as: “My duties lack variety” or “I never get sent on training courses,” many bosses will take note of these remarks. If they want to keep you then there is a good chance they will take action to make your working life more acceptable to you. If your problem is with your boss, still find a way to talk to him or her about the issues. Open, non-hostile dialogue can resolve most problems.

3. Inject fun into your work.

You may work on a factory line or as a data entry clerk in an office. On the surface these jobs might appear as dull as dishwater. However, if you go to work with an expectation of having fun, you’ll be amazed by the results. Ways of adding fun to your work day include spending breaks with upbeat colleagues, singing at work, exchanging jokes with co-workers, and understanding that being professional does not mean you always need to be serious.

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4. Customize your work space.

If your company is dragging you down and slowly drowning your hopes and dreams, you need to take immediate action. One of the best things to do is to take control of your personal working environment. For example, if you work in an office make sure your desk and drawers are clean and tidy. Then introduce some character and inspiration to your desk space by adding an ornate plant and/or adding a picture of a loved one. Small changes like these can make a big difference.

5. Take control through goal setting.

Goal setting is a powerful and proven technique for boosting results. Your employer is likely to have organizational goals, but there is nothing to stop you from creating your own goals as well. If you’re on good terms with your boss, explain to him or her that you’re planning on setting goals to help you develop your job and to benefit the organization. If you’ve stopped speaking to your boss (it happens!), then you can still set goals that are within your control. For instance, you can decide to arrive early to work each morning to tackle the daily backlog of emails.

You hate your job, and you need to quit now!

Try these five solutions:

1. Take a vacation.

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A vacation does not need to be an expensive trip to the Caribbean. Use any vacation time you may have saved up to give you breathing space to take stock of your life, and time and energy to focus on your future. It can be time off of work to spend job-hunting and going to interviews, or with friends and family who can give valuable advice. With time to think, you can decide if you really want to quit your job and if so, what your next steps will be.

2. Be prepared.

If you’ve decided to definitely quit your job, it’s best to be adequately prepared. This will mean either having sufficient savings to live on for a period of time or having another job to go to. Update your resume, give your present employer a decent notice period, and leave on the best terms possible.

3. Move sideways.

If your work problem is related to your manager or team members, you may not need to leave your current employer. Instead, you could choose to apply for other positions within your organization. A new manager and a new team could be just what you need to break free from the “I hate my job!” trap.

4. Turn your skills into a freelance career.

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Do you love your work but hate your work environment? If so, you could be a good candidate for freelancing. Let’s say that you work as a personal assistant. It’s the role in which you’ve always excelled, but right now you have an obnoxious boss. Why not take your skills to the marketplace and see if you can secure well-paid contract work? You could also consider offering your services as a “virtual assistant.”

5. Don’t look back.

If you’ve chosen to quit your job then go for it! Once you’ve informed your employer, and agreed on an exit date, put the rest of your energy and focus on what you want to do next. Sometimes people decide to leave a job, but get emotionally caught up with worrying about things such as missing their colleagues and stressing over the future. Don’t let this happen to you. Keep your eyes firmly on a brighter working future.

A job that you dislike can make your life a living hell. The secret to freedom is to act. You must decide whether to quit your job or stay where you are. Whatever your decision, improve your situation. Any of the recommendations above is far better than doing nothing and wallowing in misery year after year. Hating your job can be just what you need to motivate you to a new and more successful life. Act now!

Reference

More by this author

Craig J Todd

Freelance Writer helping businesses and people to thrive.

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Published on September 17, 2018

17 Ways to Ace Your Next Phone Interview And Land the Job You Deserve

17 Ways to Ace Your Next Phone Interview And Land the Job You Deserve

There is one thing standing in the way of you and the job of your dreams: a phone interview. The screening interview is an opportunity for companies to narrow the list of presumably qualified applicants and determine who merits a closer look.

So many candidates exclude themselves from the phone interview by being unprepared or by failing to take this screening session seriously. A phone interview should not block you from living the life you have always imagined.

Here are 17 tips to help you ace your next one:

1. Clear the deck.

If you are reading this blog, you are likely busier than you would prefer or even imagine. Even when you schedule or accept phone interviews, they are likely sandwiched between meetings.

To show up fully present, energized and engaged, I recommend you clear the deck and give yourself at least an hour of uninterrupted time before and 30 minutes following the interview.

You can use the time to mentally prepare, develop a list of questions, rehearse answers to likely questions and ensure you are comfortable and ready for the interview.

2. Look the part.

It is no secret that we perform better when we look and feel the part. If you have a phone interview, dress up for the interview, if dressing up is comfortable and allows you to put your best foot forward.

Even though you will likely do the interview from home or a private location, be sure you are dressed professionally. This will allow you to be fully engaged and present.

In the event, the interviewer asks to connect with you via Zoom, Google Hangout or Skype, you will be prepared.

3. Resend your resume and cover letter prior to the call.

As a courtesy, resend your resume and cover letter prior to your screening interview. You never know if the person interviewing you has had a busy day or if a schedule change forced him or her to work from home rather than the office where the individual has access to their files.

There have been many times in my career where a last-minute change or a mix-up with support staff has left me scrambling at the last minute to find a candidate’s resume. It is quite embarrassing to misplace a resume and ask the interviewee to resubmit it.

You can save the interviewer the trouble and earn extra points by resending both documents in advance of your call. A simple message will suffice, such as “I am looking forward to speaking with you in an hour, and I am resending my resume to ensure it is at the top of your inbox.”

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4. Research the interviewer.

Once your interview is scheduled, be sure to research the person facilitating it.

You will want to Google the person and check their social media accounts. When you research the interviewer, try to get a sense of the individual’s personal and professional interests.

Once you identify those interests, acknowledge them in the interview, but do not dwell on them, because you do not want to make the interviewer uncomfortable. Follow his or her lead. If the interviewer indulges your questions or comments, by all means, continue the conversation.

I am always impressed when someone I am meeting with takes the opportunity to learn something about me ahead of time. This projects interest, which is important in my line of work.

5. Research the company.

In addition to researching the interviewer, be sure to research the company.

Ask people in your network if they know anyone who works or has worked for the organization in question. Conduct a Google search on the company, and be mindful to look beyond the first page of the search query.

If there are yelp reviews on the company, be careful to review those and look for trends as well as how recent the reviews were posted. While more recent reviews are obviously cause for pause, older reviews – depending on their nature – could be problematic as well.

6. Check the staff listing or “About Us” section of the company’s website.

Part of your research into a company is assessing whether you know staff or board members who are connected with the company.

Most organizations list their staff or board members in the “About Us” or “Our Team” section of the website. Prior to a phone interview, check these sections to determine whether you know someone who works for the company. If you do, reach out to that person to request a phone interview to learn more about the company.

7. Remember interviewing is a two-way street.

As much as the company representative wants to learn about you as the interviewee, you will want to learn about the organization.

Try to ferret out information on the company, the job for which you are applying as well as the manager to whom you would report. You will also want to ask questions to assess the interview process.

Additionally, because culture is important and will permit or slow your ability to do your job, ask questions to assess company culture, such as “What do your employees say they like most about working for your organization?” “What do employees say they like least?” “What do you do to create and maintain a healthy workplace culture?”

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8. Develop questions prior to the interview.

Prior to your interview, develop a list of questions about the company, the position for which you are applying, growth opportunities in the company, the ideal candidate for the position, and so forth. This will save you the trouble of thinking of questions on the spot during the interview.

I have found that once I become nervous, it is a lot harder to come up with questions on the spot, and interviews can be anxiety-producing without preparation.

9. Stand during the interview.

I train leaders and, incidentally, graduate students to become spokespersons.

I recommend that they stand during media interviews. I find that it helps the person speaking to project better, and it reduces the urge to get too comfortable in an interview setting and say something that could be too informal.

Similarly, I recommend interviewees stand for at least a portion of their phone interview.

10. Allow the interviewer to talk.

While it is essential you ask questions during an interview, you should not dominate the conversation.

Most people love talking about themselves and the company they represent, and it is your job as the interviewee to walk a fine line between allowing the interviewer to talk and interspersing questions when and where appropriate.

I am not suggesting you remain silent – you want the interviewer to learn about you; but you should ensure that the interviewer has ample opportunity to do what most people do best: talk about themselves and their work.

11. Refrain from multitasking.

We all live hurried lives, and most of us have to-do lists that are impossible to complete.

When we have multiple due dates and obligations, it is typical to want to avail oneself of every seemingly free moment of time.

When conducting or participating in a phone interview, be as present as possible. This means refraining from multitasking, which could mean responding to emails, text messages or social media messages. It could mean researching the company during the interview.

Whatever multitasking means for you, simply do not do it, especially during a screening interview.

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12. Conduct the phone interview in a place where there is minimal noise.

A common thread throughout this post has been that most of us live busy lives. So, it is natural to be on the go.

If you have the luxury of conducting a phone interview from home or a private office where there is minimal noise, do so. You may also rent a co-working space or ask a friend if you can borrow his or her office.

Whatever you do, select a place where there is minimal noise and distraction. The person interviewing you should not have to strain to hear what you are saying or compete with ambient noises.

When I am interviewing a candidate and competing with background noise, I grow frustrated and my focus can shift from getting to know the person to silencing the noise. Do not force your interviewer to choose.

13. Be punctual.

Do not leave the interviewer waiting. This is both rude and unprofessional, and it may count against you.

If you are able to follow my earlier advice and not schedule meetings within an hour of your phone interview, you should have no time being prompt for your discussion.

If you foresee that you will be late, be sure to give the interviewer a heads-up at least 15-20 minutes prior to the start of the call.

14. Focus on how you can and will help.

Let’s face it: people are naturally self-interested.

When you walk into an interview focused on what you can bring and how you can solve a hiring manager’s problems, you will set yourself and your candidacy apart.

Think about the challenges you could potentially solve and then share how your joining the team will benefit the company, not just you.

15. Take the interview seriously.

Do not assume you will have an opportunity to meet face to face with company representatives. Do not discount the weight that may be placed on phone interviews.

I once applied for a position on the East Coast while living on the West Coast. While my first interview was face to face, my interview with one senior leader was over the phone. I walked into the interview thinking it would be less intense than it was.

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From the moment the leader got on the phone with me, I was on my toes. I had to quickly recalibrate to handle the intensity of the questions lobbed on me.

To this day, more than six years later, that phone interview remains one of the most difficult interviews I have ever had. Fortunately for me, I was offered the job, but the experience still stands out as a learning lesson.

16. Send a thank-you note.

Kindness is underrated. We live in a society where most people are overscheduled and overbooked.

When faced with intense pressure, it can be easy to underestimate the role of kindness. But when someone shares a portion of the day with you by granting you an interview, you owe it to that individual and to yourself to send a thank-you note following the interview.

The note can be via email, a standard letter or a card. So few people do this that those who do stand out.

Become an individual who remembers this gesture of kindness and professional courtesy.

17. Be positive.

Energy really is contagious. If you don’t believe me, consider locking yourself in a room for one hour with people are upset. By the time you leave the room, you will be upset right along with them. It is natural to mirror the other person even if you do not realize you are doing it.

During your next phone interview, mirror positivity, both about the position, the company and most importantly, your skill sets. The interviewer will pick up on your energy and positivity and that will reflect favorably.

I cannot tell you how many times I have interviewed candidates who communicated no excitement or enthusiasm. Getting through the interview was difficult, not to mention, I kept thinking about what it would be like to work with the person daily.

Being positive not only helps you feel better, it helps the person interviewing you as well.

If you have read this list and want to add other tips, please tweet the link to this article and include the point you believe I missed. Use the hashtag #AceIt when you reach out.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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