I was super excited about a new job some years back. It was something I’ve always wanted to do – to be part of a new fashion brand and help with the marketing. I love fashion so it was the best role for me. There was also the potential for overseas travel and the salary wasn’t bad. Plus, the office was near home. Win win!
Or so I thought. Two weeks into the new role, I soon learnt that the cool job wasn’t cool at all. My boss was hardly around (he ran other businesses and I was pretty certain that this was just a small project on his portfolio), I didn’t have that many colleagues (my boss wanted to keep it small), and the office wasn’t as glam as I thought it would be (it’s supposed to be fashion but this – nowhere near!).
I travelled once to Shanghai but even then I didn’t do much as my senior basically did everything herself and I was just a tag-along (she wasn’t very friendly either and often spoke bad about the boss). The kicker? I was often asked to work in the shop to help out so much so it became almost my main responsibility instead of doing what I was hired to. Yups, I became an overpaid retail assistant.
As if that wasn’t bad enough, my boss claimed I wasn’t pulling my weight (hello, when I’m busy selling clothes instead!?) in the role I was hired for and decided I wasn’t the right fit and therefore would have to undergo an additional month of probation. I quit and never looked back.
The lesson to be learnt here? That sometimes the dream job can turn into a nightmare. Maybe it’s because the real job you do doesn’t align with what was said during the job interview. Or the company culture doesn’t quite sit well with you. You constantly work late and even during the weekends. Your boss could be a real pain in the you know where, making work unbearable almost immediately. Or worst, it is all of the above!
You’re not alone. A lot of times it takes people two or three jobs because they land one they actually love. You may think quitting is the answer to this situation... but it can get tricky. After all, it takes time to get used to a new job so you should be asking yourself if you’ve given the new job a fair chance to grow on you.
And wouldn’t it be awkward to put in your notice when you’re just a few weeks or months into the new job? Does that reflect badly on you? What should you do?
For starters, you need to give it some time. Some roles need time to adjust and feel comfortable with, like with all new things you try. It can be frustrating that things aren’t going your way but if you give it some time, who knows – it just might!
Plus, a lot of people get disappointed with their new job quickly simply because they feel out of their comfort zone and don’t know what to expect. You may think that you can jump straight into the role but the truth is you need to figure out how to do your job properly first before you judge it. You could simply hate your new job because you think you’re not good at it and feel out of sorts.
So try to stick it out before you think of quitting. If after six months of really trying and you still hate it, then by all means, move on.
Or try talking to your boss about your concerns. Maybe recommend a few things that may make the job more bearable or productive. You could be working super long hours. Perhaps you can ask your boss for flexibility on what time you can come in during the morning. But after talking to your boss and it appears that nothing is going to be changed, start looking elsewhere.
Try this too: Give it a real thought and weigh the pros and cons. Write it down on a piece of paper. If the cons are more, then you may want to consider moving on. But if both are about the same, think about how you can make the most of the situation to learn and discover things that make your new job great.
Finally, give yourself a time frame. Liking a job takes time and practice. It’s like with any relationship – you’re still working your way around it to see if you actually want to stick around.
Same with the new job that didn’t quite meet your expectations. Ask yourself if your expectations are realistic. Give yourself time to get to know the boss, your colleagues and the way things work around in the company.
Then give yourself a timeline. If when the time is up and you still don’t like your new job, the answer is pretty much leave. But during the time, commit to learning the job and making new friends. You may just end up loving your job and it truly is a dream!
Photo by Icons8 team on Unsplash