Jump or be pushed?

You can’t ignore it any longer – you and your employer are just not great bed fellows any more. You and your boss may hate the sight of each other, or your lack of interest in what you do means your performance is suffering. Time to part is fast approaching …

The question is, should you resign and clear your desk/empty your locker, or wait until it is done for you?

It can be a difficult one to answer. Be sacked and your reputation might suffer, but if you jump ship you could lose out financially.

Here are a few considerations you should think about before you make any final decision:

How is your career progressing?

It’s easier for younger professionals to bounce back from sackings than experienced employees. Young professionals as still learning the career ropes of course, so it’s easier to forgive them for making mistakes.

For people who have 20 to 30 years of work behind them, being sacked is less understandable. Remember that when applying for a new role, you do have to acknowledge that you were dismissed, but you don’t have to discuss why if you’d rather not.

How are you feeling mentally?

If you feel it’s difficult to even get out of bed in the morning with the knowledge of the day that lies ahead, then it may be best to hand in your notice. If you continue your stressful path, your performance is likely to suffer anyway, and a sacking may be the result.

How are you likely to get another job?

Employers prefer to employ people who are already employed or, at a push, have been unemployed for less than six months. Long-term employment is seen as something of a black mark, and people at manager level and above can typically expect to be unemployed for around that amount of time.

You need to review your financial situation, your chances of finding new work and the state of your industry before making any decisions. If you can, look for a new job while you still have your current one.

How strong is your current position?

Companies who sack employees create a poor reputation for themselves, so you may be able to lever yourself a suitable package for resigning instead. Of course this is more likely to be to your benefit if you hold a medium-to-high ranking position, and are not just someone whose voice in the industry has no volume whatsoever.