When Should You Resign?

Last year, during my reservist in-camp training, I had a chat with one of my platoon mates on when is the right time to resign from a job. He was much older than me and was in his early forties. So obviously, given his wealth of experience, I thought what he said would probably be true.

In our conversation, he shared with me that when your boss starts to load you with many assignments or meaningless tasks, its a sure sign that he is trying to force you out of the company. Clearly, my friend wasn’t happy with his job but I didn’t urge him to be positive because at that point of time, I couldn’t really fathom what he was driving at.

Fast forward to a year later, his point really hit me. On thinking back, I am able to empathize him now as I am now going through the same situation as him then. For the past 6 months, I was loaded with many key projects with pressing deadlines, and also many small trivial tasks that don’t add value to the organization or myself.

On a daily basis, I was chased by colleagues from other divisions for trivial issues that could really be solved if they had bothered to put in some efforts. My boss, seemingly unaware of all these, continued to load me with more work even after I sounded out to him that I am maxed out already. His reply to me was that he was grooming me to take on more responsibilities and position me for promotion.


However, recent developments in my organization validated my thinking that I would not be promoted, at least not for the next 3 to 4 years. I felt somehow frustrated, cheated and angry with my boss for “dangling carrots” and giving me false hope. For the past year, all my efforts had gone to waste. If I had known that promotion is not on the card, then I would not do so many management presentations, conduct course, write papers and engage in cross-divisional projects. I would have jumped ship to another division or find another company that recognize my talent and abilities. My boss really wasted two years of my time.

Should I have a chat with my boss on my career progression? Well, frankly I don’t know because even though he is technically competent and has high emotional quotient, his intellect isn’t really that exceptionally high (he was promoted to his current position because my previous boss left and there was no other suitable candidates). He couldn’t sense-make ground issues accurately and thus, unable to make firm decisions. This had resulted in much agony among fellow colleagues because of the perceived lack of direction and guidance from him. Given his nature, I would not bank on him to fight for my promotion in front of my big boss.

I guess the only option is to seek a transfer or in the worst case, find another job. I still prefer the former because I like the company culture very much and the job carries much prestige in the industry. I guess if I am to resign, then the old adage rings true – “Employees don’t leave their companies, they leave their bosses”.

What about you? Are you happy with your job? How do you deal with bosses with no leadership skill?

Magically yours,

SG Wealth Builder

2 thoughts on “When Should You Resign?

  • July 31, 2015 at 3:43 pm

    Hi Gerald,

    It appears to me that your boss is operating according to the motto “if you need something urgently done, give the task to the busiest person in the office”. And apparently it seems to be working – for him.

    Talking to him in a constructive manner might help to clarify any misunderstandings both of you might have. Try to put yourself into his shoes to understand why he is like he is.

    If he values your contributions (see above), he will change something about your task assignments to retain you in his team. If not, at least you know where you stand with him and your next step might be easier to decide on.

    What helped me in discussions with my bosses was to remind myself that I am self-employed and that I don’t always have to work for the same client (= boss, company, division).

    One always has a choice no matter how desperate the situation.

  • August 3, 2015 at 2:01 pm

    Thank you for your comments.
    I think your advice is sound and good.
    Will definitely find a good chance to trash out the issues with my boss.

    SG Wealth Builder

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