Let’s be honest. You’re sick of your current job. You’re telling yourself everything will be fine, it’s just a little chaotic for only a few weeks, I am a loyal and patient employee and yeah, everything will be fine again. The only thing you wanted to do was writing cool software in a calm environment, and now you have to answer the phone, deal with customers and explain your boss that you can’t fix five bugs and show him two new features at once. And sitting at home after a long day at work you’re absolutely not satisfied with the code you have written today, if you have written any at all. What now? Well, here’s a hint: Quit your job and apply for another.
If you already got invited for a job interview, it’ll help to read about customer meetings as the tech guy. Most of these rules also apply to job interviews. But if you’re currently stuck in your current situation, you have to get some facts straight about yourself.
The most important rule for changing a job by far is: Know what you want. Why do you want to change it? What do you expect from another job? Do you want more money? Do you have tasks that just suck? What about your colleagues? You have to find these things out and really figure out what you want.
For example, I was a programmer for my whole life. Started out by learning Quick Basic by the age of ten, studied Computer Science and finally made games professionally after I got my degree. Perfect. But then I wanted to see something new. So I applied for a job for data warehousing and after three months I knew: Man, this sucks! I missed programming so much that I even asked my boss back then if it was possible to switch to the Java programmers. He replied with “programming is not for you”. Yeah, sure…
So I applied for another job and everything was fine again. I knew what I wanted. But why aren’t you feeling happy?
You want more money
If it really is just about the money, you should try different things first. In this working world you have to prove yourself before you get a raise. Sad, I know.. But did you? Are you really helping your company to get bigger and earn more money and do you ask for new tasks instead of just sitting in front of your desk and hoping to be invisible? More money comes with more work. It’s that simple. And it’s not always worth it! Keep that in mind. If money is your number one reason to change something about your current situation, maybe you have to change the way your working. However, if you’ve worked your ass off for quite some time and talked to your boss about that and you still won’t get a raise, it’s probably time to look for another employer. Just one side-note on that: Look for the average wages in your position. It’s easy to google your position, age and location. Maybe you already earn a lot?
Your colleagues suck or even bully you
There are two reasons in this section. If you think your team is just stupid, you can’t learn anything from them, they won’t listen to you and everything is getting harder because you simply can’t work with your colleagues, there might be a way to talk about that with your supervisor first. Maybe there are chances of joining another team. If, however, your supervisor does not cooperate, quit.
If you’re finding yourself in a situation where you’re getting bullied, quit your job as soon as you can. No money in the world is worth staying in a room with a**holes for the whole day. Really.
You lack fulfilling tasks
The most reasonable cause to quit a job is that you hate the things you have to do. As I wrote in the introduction you may be stuck in a position where you don’t have the opportunities to do the things you love anymore. Since you’re reading this blog post on this website, you may want to be a great programmer and always learn new technologies and get better and better at your craft. Instead, everything you do is getting you further away from your dreams and soon you will fear to apply for new jobs because you think you don’t know how to write code nowadays. It’s a vicious cycle. You may try to talk to your supervisor about that and maybe there are ways to get more interesting projects with different or modern technologies. But it’s about the culture of your company. If they use old stuff and are afraid of modern technologies, chances of success are low. It’s time to look for a new job.
While you’re doing that, ask yourself what kind of technology you would like to use. Maybe it’s just another development process you are looking for? Currently you have to deal with the waterfall model and all you want to do is being in a SCRUM team? The software development world already is agile, that’s for sure. Maybe you initially got hired as a backend developer and now you’re writing HTML, CSS and lots of jQuery for all those innocent browsers out there (yes, I’m looking at you, Internet Explorer..). Then you should look for a position where they want you to write web services and the database communication.
To sum up, don’t just apply for any job you can find if you have a little bit more patience (this does not apply for the bullying!). Try to find the right position. Also do not underestimate the time you have to commute. Sitting 30 minutes longer in your car or a train for a little bit more money won’t make you happy, either.
I hope these little tips help you to clear your mind. Please let me know if they did and what else you think are reasons to quit a programming job. I’d love to read about you in the comments.