How to Make Your Current Job Work

Are you feeling increasingly unhappy with your current job? Do you find yourself daydreaming about other things you could do with the time you spend at work? Do you dread the thought of Monday mornings?

You may have thought of quitting, but instead, why not address the issues that you dislike about your current job? You may be able to solve the problems and make your current job work for you.

Take a look at these six common reasons why people leave their jobs. Do any of these seem familiar? If you can identify the problem, you can make the changes that will reinvigorate your job and career.

    1. You Feel Stuck in Your Current Job
      Are you feeling stuck in your current position with no hope of promotion? Do you look around your organization and fail to see any job you’d like to do next?

      • Try to explore options with your boss. You may be wrong about your lack of opportunities. Ask about opportunities for lateral moves and for more interesting, skill-stretching assignments. Most workplaces value initiative and people who want to continue to learn and grow.
      • Consider swapping assignments with a coworker who has the same feeling about trying something new–with your manager’s agreement, of course.
    2. You Feel Unappreciated in Your Current Job
      You work hard every day, but you don’t feel your boss or your workplace recognizes your efforts. You can’t remember the last time anyone thanked you for your contributions. Instead of complaining:

        • Tell your boss you would like her input about how she views your work. Say that you’d like to sit down with her regularly to obtain feedback, both good and bad, so you can improve.
        • Offer to lead an employee recognition team that can develop a process for recognizing the hard work and efforts of all your coworkers. After all, if you’re feeling unappreciated, you can bet others are, too.

      If you’re feeling unappreciated because you’re feeling underpaid, ask your manager for a raise or ask when you can expect your compensation review. Follow up to make sure it happens.


  1. You Feel Overworked on Your Job
    If you feel overworked, you probably are. Employers across the board have cut back on hiring and are expecting employees to do more with fewer resources. But before you say anything, collect good data and evidence to support your claim. If you find that your job duties do require more work than one person can comfortably handle, talk to your boss and present the following options.

    • Hire a new employee.
    • Assign a part-time employee or intern to work with you.
    • Identify tasks you can stop doing.
    • Determine the value-added tasks and eliminate non-critical job components.
  2. You Dislike Your Career Field
    Sometimes, people discover that they have chosen the wrong career or field of work. They dislike the activities and the actual content of the job. If you fundamentally don’t like your work, consider these actions.

    • Spend a year exploring your career options and needs.
    • Meet with people already working in the fields you are exploring.
    • Determine education or credentials necessary to change fields.
    • Make a careful plan with a timeline that includes giving your current employer plenty of notice, and move on.
  3. You Dislike Your Employer, Coworkers or Customers
    Maybe you like your work but dislike your current coworkers or customers. Start out by exploring whether you have any control over any aspect of the situation that is bothering you. If you identify areas you control, try fixing them. Perhaps sitting in the break room listening to people complain is ruining your good spirits. Stay out of there for awhile to see if your outlook improves. You might also consider transferring to a new work area or trading customers with a coworker.
  4. You Can’t Stand Your Boss
    This is the number one reason people give for why they leave their current job or employer. When managers are nasty, abusive and controlling, this is understandable. There are more subtle things some managers do, however, that drive staff away.

    These include failing to:

    • provide direction,
    • involve people in decisions about their work,
    • appreciate staff contributions, and
    • help develop the talents and abilities of their employees.

    If you find yourself in such a situation, try these actions:

    • Talk to your manager about your concerns. Many people don’t realize the effect their actions create.
    • If that is unsuccessful, talk with your manager’s boss or your human resources department to see if they can remedy the situation.
    • Transfer to a different department. Try to remove yourself from the manager’s influence.

There are legitimate times and legitimate reasons for quitting a job and moving on, but if you’re not ready to make that step, do everything in your power to make your current job workable.