To some extent, every job is a gamble. Just because you like the company and the salary and the job description, it doesn’t mean you’ll wind up being a good fit. In fact, you might find yourself wanting to mosey in a hurry.
It’s a surprisingly common occurrence, and in a great Daily Muse post titled “4 Things You Can Do When You Hate Your New Job,” career coach and Job Success Lab founder Lea McLeod reports that 31 percent of new hires quit after six months or less on the job. Although hasty exits aren’t unheard of, McLeod cautions against giving your notice before you’re absolutely sure you can’t make it work. Her list is filled with great advice on how to decide whether you might stick it out.
Her first tip is to “figure out what’s working and what isn’t.” Unless the new gig is truly horrendous and completely antithetical to what you thought you were signing up for, it’s likely there are some things about it you can tolerate. Maybe it’s a terrific company that offers a lot of room for growth and professional development. Do the longterm pros outweigh the short-term cons? That’s the first question to ask.
McLeod’s next tip is slightly more difficult: “Have ‘the talk’ with your manager.” As McLeod explains, companies invest a lot of time and money into new hires, and it’s in their best interest to keep folks from splitting. You can put that clout to your advantage by being honest with your boss and discussing the difficulties you’re having. Ask for the help you need to succeed, and with luck, you’ll get it.
Next up, McLeod suggests you “give yourself a timeframe.” You don’t want to rush out the door, she says, and by having the patience to get to know your coworkers, meet regularly with your manager, and find a mentor within the company, you’ll be able to really get the lay of the land and make a more informed decision.
Lastly, if you go through the aforementioned process and decide you just can’t stay, you might consider asking for your old job back. If it’s already been taken, your ex-employer might be able to find something else for you. It’s yet another reason to leave on good terms. It’s never smart to burn a bridge you might decide to re-cross later on.