Do Not Take a Job Just Because You Need One

What Could Happen If You Are Desperate

You worked at your last job for fourteen years. You liked working at the company so much that you planned to retire there. That was before the company went bankrupt. So far you’ve been out of work over six months. Your unemployment check does not cover expenses. All of your bills are late and collection agencies call every day, including Saturday. Your wife has a full time job, but you hate being Mr. Mom. Your love life with your wife has dropped considerably. You stopped caring about it a long time ago.

You’ve changed your resume a dozen times. Searching through several papers and online every day has been painful. Career fairs haven’t been much better. Reading rejection letters from those companies who actually send one quickly becomes emasculating.

The emergency bank account is almost empty. You and your family can’t do the kind of things you used to as a family. You try to learn how to sell things on eBay®. Your wife suggests that you check your ego at the door and take any job that pays more than unemployment.

One day, a friend tells you about a job. He thinks it might be something you can do. It pays fairly well, though much less than you used to make. It is also out of the area of your expertise. Still, a job is a job, and working with your friend, you get it.

You knew when you took the job that it paid much less than what you made. You are overqualified for the job. Still, it was better than nothing, and bringing income back to the house would ease tension at home. You start your new job with a smile on your face. However, after you get the first couple of checks under your belt, the job starts to get on your nerves.

Your supervisor is twenty years younger than you. Most of the work is on computer which you didn’t have to use that much at your last job. The pace of the work is too fast for you. Your peers talk about the job as a career path. Soon you do the bare minimum work load, hate every minute, and can’t wait to get home. You start to mark time, looking at the clock every twenty minutes. You run out the door the minute the clock hits five.

When you get your first paycheck, you want to cry. You are making what you used to pay in taxes. You’re so stressed out at the end of each day you need a nap the minute you get home. By Friday you are so exhausted you spend the entire weekend in bed. Sunday comes and you have a headache all day, dreading Monday. You begin to gain weight. You used to jog every morning. Now you’re too drained to get out of bed.

You are able to pay off some of your bills. But you realize that you have to get past your three month probation period. You’re afraid you’ll never make it that far. You hate your job.

Your attitude at work and home starts to go downhill. Your family is afraid to talk to you even when you are awake. You’ve developed a scowl on your face. Finally your spouse tells you to quit. She can’t take the personality change any more. You are ecstatic. She is giving you permission to be put out of your misery. You don’t even give two weeks notice.

This is why you should not take a job just because you need one. Let someone who really loves and excels at the job have it. Here is why:

  • You are not the only person who suffers when you take a job you hate. The friend who referred you will be called and told what happened. His credibility now has a mark on it;
  • Your supervisor and the company will suffer from your negative attitude, reluctance to learn, commit, and adapt to the job;
  • You will not give 100% to the job because you are overqualified and insulted that you have to work at that level;
  • You will inevitably add insult to injury to your colleagues. When they share their career visions at the company, you tell everyone who will listen that you are only there “until I find something better”;
  • Hiring an employee is a big financial and labor intensive cost. The company has to invest time, training, taxes and insurance when you are hired. When you ‘quit’ a job, all of the money and efforts accorded toward making you a valuable employee is wasted;

Do everyone a favor. Do regular temporary work until something comes along for which you are compatible. Temporary work can be full time or part time. You can be contracted to a client for six months. The pay is decent and will give you time to continue your search. You will be exposed to different types of companies; different management styles, and has a variety of work. If you find a job you enjoy, you can work out hiring details between the temp agency and their client.

Final thought: No matter how much you hate a job, give the company some respect by telling your supervisor that it is not the right fit for you. They hired you when everyone else passed. The company will probably let you go as soon as possible. Isn’t that what you wanted? That’s the classy way to leave a company. When you “quit” or don’t show up again after getting paid you dishonor yourself and the people who helped you when you needed it.

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Comments 10 comments

Knightheart profile image

Knightheart 5 years ago from MIssouri, USA

Great article! I have been in this situation before. When you get desperate, many times wrong decisions are made. I recall my resume and work history looked like Swiss Cheese. One job after another were totally unsatisfying and brought on depression. Most didn't last a year and I was absolutely miserable. Some of the jobs paid well, but that doesn't cut it when you dislike the job.

Thankfully, I decided my health, happiness, and sanity were worth more than some paycheck. Although I am not making much, I am much happier doing what I loved to do before I lost my job of almost 20 years!

Thanks for posting this!


Carolyn2008 profile image

Carolyn2008 5 years ago from Boston Author

Thank you for your comment. I believe an unhappy employee is not good for the employee nor for business. I hope it helps others.


J.S.Matthew profile image

J.S.Matthew 5 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

Carolyn, you are such a wonderful writer! I am glad that we met at HubCamp and I hope we can all meet up in the summer. This is another great article!

JSMatthew~


i4infomania 5 years ago

indeed inspirational ... i am yet into college ,,, but seems like i have lot to learn


i4infomania 5 years ago

indeed inspirational ... i am yet into college ,,, but seems like i have lot to learn


Carolyn2008 profile image

Carolyn2008 5 years ago from Boston Author

Unfortunately I learned from experience. I guess that's what it means to "Pay my Dues."


BusinessTime profile image

BusinessTime 4 years ago from Twin Cities

This is a great article. Temp jobs are the perfect solution here -- when you circulate around a few different jobs, you have the perfect opportunity to decide if you enjoy the field BEFORE signing an employment agreement. And if you do a great job, the company might just extend an offer of employment!


Carolyn2008 profile image

Carolyn2008 4 years ago from Boston Author

Thank you, BusinessTime. Temp jobs are a good way to feel out a new career. Holiday work will help meet different kinds of people with whom you may network. The most important thing is to keep a positive attitude. That will be noticed by anyone for whom you work.


valdar9 profile image

valdar9 4 years ago

Carolyn, I have found myself in this position where I have contemplated taking a job just because I am desperate. At this point in my life, I think I am too "old" to do this. I am holding out until I find somewhere I will enjoy until retirement:-)


Carolyn2008 profile image

Carolyn2008 4 years ago from Boston Author

I have been in the position of taking a position out of desperation, and hiring a person desperate for a job. Neither worked for me. Doing consulting work while deciding on what my passion was worked for me. Now I am not working full time, but what I am doing makes me happy. It takes strict money management, but at least I don't go to work with a daily stress headache.

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