By Andrew Fennell, Fast Company
There’s no denying that 2020 wreaked havoc on the working world, and since then, employees appear to be leaving their jobs in droves in what has been dubbed the Great Resignation.
In fact, a study conducted by Microsoft found that 41% of workers, worldwide, were considering quitting or changing professions this year.
While the pandemic provided an opportunity for bosses to prove they care more about the well-being of their workforce than their own bank balances—many failed to do this, and staff are returning the favor by quitting.
If you have noticed any of the following red flags in your workplace, it could be a sign that you should also consider preparing your résumé for a new employer who could treat you better.
LACK OF REMOTE WORKING
With the pandemic slowly diminishing as a result of social distancing, local lockdowns, and gradually rising vaccination rates, many businesses are keen to bring employees back into the office. Some organizations have also chosen to embrace hybrid work, allowing their employees to work mainly remotely and only visiting the office when necessary—therefore placing trust and respect firmly with the employee.
However, some bosses haven’t fully grasped the benefits of allowing remote work and want staff to return to the old fashioned 9-to-5, completely overlooking the hard work and results that have been delivered remotely over the past year.
So, with remote and hybrid working styles possibly here to stay, it’s important as a job seeker to be wary of any organization that doesn’t offer these flexible working opportunities, especially if you want to cut down on commute time and expenses.
How many times have you had to book a full day off work if you want to make a doctor’s appointment or attend your child’s parent-teacher conference? This is the reality for too many U.S. professionals, and it can be very inconvenient and frustrating.
By offering flexibility and encouraging work-life balance, employers can reap the rewards just as much as their workforce. Yet, too many feel like allowing employees to manage their own schedule means they’re missing out on valuable working hours.
So, if you find yourself having to take days off or ending up in a fight with your boss every time you have a dental appointment, it might be time to update your résumé for a company and boss who value your time.
LITTLE ATTENTION PAID TO MENTAL HEALTH
The pandemic has led to a range of negative health effects for workers, both physically and mentally. As months of lockdown and business closures took their toll, it became apparent which employers were prioritizing their employee’s well-being, and which were trying to rush them back to work and put them in potentially harmful situations.
If you’ve relayed mental health complaints to your managers in the past 18 months, and they’ve fallen on deaf ears, it’s natural to wonder if your employer has your best interests at heart. Of course, there will be periods of stress in any workplace, but if a company is grinding your mental health into the ground without even bothering to ask how you are, it’s almost guaranteed that there’s a better option out there for you in today’s job market.
As a seasoned professional, it’s safe to assume that you’re good at your job and have an understanding of your industry. Yet, some employers just can’t let go of the reigns and who feel the need to micromanage their employees.
For many, this means having a boss who is always hovering, criticizing even the smallest deviation from their own work method, or constantly asking for (needless) updates and progress reports. Sound familiar?
If you have little to no autonomy at work, this suggests a real lack of trust on the part of your employer and should be a major red flag to you. After all, they should be more focused on the results you’re achieving rather than overseeing every step of how you achieved them.
WHAT TO PROVIDE IN RETURN
When you’re lucky enough to find an employer who appears to appreciate your talent and trust your capabilities, it’s vital that you convey, as early as the interview process, that you’re worthy of such trust.
If you’re offered flexibility and freedom, you need to reciprocate that trust by delivering results without needing to be watched over. If your boss isn’t setting strict rules, that’s great—and all the more reason for you to manage your time effectively to ensure that you deliver value.
If you’re lucky enough to feel that your mental health is being looked after at work, you should feel the need to also support those around you. If one of your colleagues seems particularly stressed out, take the time to ask how they are and maybe offer to help lighten their workload temporarily.
If you feel that you’re not getting a fair deal in your current job, then don’t be afraid to shop around. A hiring market in favor of job seekers means you might get what you’ve always wished for.