Author Topic: When to resign?  (Read 5064 times)


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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When to resign?
« on: May 24, 2012, 06:07:25 AM »
Hello Mustachians!

A couple of years ago, I switched roles at my company.  It was a fantastic move, allowing me to branch out into a new area, etc. etc.  The only downside was that my lovely six mile commute turned into a 30-35 mile commute.  Totally worthwhile tradeoff, as I was enhancing and adding to my skill set. 

I got tired of the drive after a few months and looked into moving closer to work but for various reasons, that hasn't worked out (yay real estate market) and doesn't appear to be an option in the near future.

Now that I'm two years into the role, I've gotten most of what I wanted out of this role.  Future roles would be in this location or another one equally far from home so I've come to the sad conclusion that it's time to leave this wonderful company.  I've had a lot of amazing opportunities here but I cannot continue to spend so much of my time, energy, and money on this commute.

I've kicked off a job search for something within 10 miles of home, through contacting a recruiter and also applying directly for a few positions.  I'm also toying with the possibility of starting my own business and doing some research on that front.  Honestly, there's a lot more that can and should be done and I'll be ramping up as soon as I'm back from vacation :)

My question is this: at what point do I pull the plug on the current job? 

I drive 70 miles per day to/from work.  In the best case scenario, that's 1.5 hours per day at a minimum and at least one tank of gas at $45-50 in my lovely 33mpg+ car.  So every month, I'm burning $200 in the gas tank and 30 hours on the road (ugh, makes me a little nauseous just to type that).

Conventional wisdom dictates waiting until the next job is lined up but really, anyone who follows MMM isn't worried about being conventional, right? 

The unconventional option would be to put in my notice immediately and then focus full bore on a job search.  I get a little nervous about that approach because all you hear is about how tough the job market is.  There's also a higher probability that people at my current company will be upset or offended, since I'd be leaving for what they'd see as no reason.  I think I can spin my way through that but it's still a concern.

FWIW, I have a nice little chunk of savings I can rely on for a year or so, which means I wouldn't be living on the street if I don't find a job immediately.  However, it's scary to picture a scenario with no traditional income (i.e. paycheck).

So I turn to you, Mustachians, to help me through your wisdom.  What should I do?


  • Stubble
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Re: When to resign?
« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2012, 07:33:02 AM »
I think more info is needed before we can render an opinion:
- are you the sole income provider?
- do you have children or any other dependents? How young?
- what is your debt situation?
- do you have an e-fund?

I will say that when I moved to where I currently live, I came without a job prospect. But I'm in nursing (relatively easy to find a job, since my specialty is in demand), am single with no dependents, had just sold my house, and was going to be rooming with a friend who lives in the area. So my expenses would be shared and I had plenty of cash at the time. I knew I could wait at least 6 months or more if needed, and had a job in 3 weeks (mostly waiting for HR to get their act together).


  • Handlebar Stache
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Re: When to resign?
« Reply #2 on: May 24, 2012, 07:38:05 AM »
I was just going to ask for more info also...  :)

Is the savings for a year something you don't mind using up?  What are your long term plans regarding FI, etc.

I'd probably lean toward finding more about your options and plans at this point, but that shouldn't take more than a week or two of really looking at other jobs available and thinking more about business opportunities.


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Re: When to resign?
« Reply #3 on: May 24, 2012, 08:15:55 AM »
Good questions, thanks for responding.

I am not the sole income provider and my only dependents are my cats.  My partner is very supportive of whichever option I choose, often saying he wants me to do whatever will make me happy (yes, I am very lucky!).  So I only need to worry about covering my own personal expenses (including the cats').

My only debt is a mortgage on a home I no longer live in.  I'm trying to sell it but if a buyer doesn't appear by August, I will rent.  I should be able to cover all house-related expenses (including property management) with rent...there's even a possibility of a small surplus from that.

I don't have an e-fund, per se.  I recently lumped together most of my non-retirement cash accounts into one account.  That's where I have the "at least one year" money.  To be honest, if I manage it well, it could be 2-3 year money but I think I'd get pretty nervous if I didn't have something generating cash within a year.

I'm probably about 1/2 to 1/3 of the way to FI (the number is still moving as I take a harder look at the expense level needed).  While it is a goal, I also recognize that life is short.  I would rather work for ten years and be relatively happy versus working for five years and hating every moment.  Not that I hate my job but the commute angst really colors things.

I've applied for several positions that are similar to or a step up from my current role and am waiting to see how those pan out.  I kept the geographic area pretty tight to start so there's some room for expansion there (but not a lot - don't want to get into the same situation all over again!).  I also have some past experience that's in very high demand around here but that isn't really the line of work I'm excited about.  My thought was to give myself six months to find something "ideal" and then start expanding into the less ideal options.

Hope that helps - thanks again for your thoughts!


  • Magnum Stache
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Re: When to resign?
« Reply #4 on: May 24, 2012, 08:41:36 AM »
Unless you are in a high demand field that you can basically make a call and have different job tomorrow then I would keep the job until you find something else.  It is always easier to find a job when you have one. There are many people looking for work and the longer it goes the harder it is, because they think you get stale or if no other company hasn't wanted you then why would we. 

It would be even worse for you because companies will either (1) find it irresponsible that you up and quit and will be skeptical that all was good and you just did it to shave 20 minutes off your commute or (2) they that you really aren't committed to the hampster wheel (which obviously you and everybody on this site is not committed to).

Besides you seem to like your job and keeping it will also help on your progress to FI.


  • Stubble
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Re: When to resign?
« Reply #5 on: May 24, 2012, 08:55:01 AM »
Do you have vacation time saved?  How about a couple of strategic planned days off to focus on the job search.


  • Bristles
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Re: When to resign?
« Reply #6 on: May 24, 2012, 09:43:03 AM »
It is far easier to look for a job and make the right decision about offers when you already have a job.

Unless the current situation is unbearable I would absolutely stick it out at the current place.

Maybe get audiobooks / podcasts to make the journey feel less useless?


  • Bristles
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Re: When to resign?
« Reply #7 on: May 24, 2012, 02:49:43 PM »
It sounds like you know what you want to do.  If you're really unhappy with your current situation, I'd say you should resign.

Everyone says that it's easier to find a job when you currently have one, which it probably is if you have enough energy after working and commuting 30 hours/month to conduct a thorough job search.  I actually think this reasoning is why many people end up complacent and stuck at their jobs.  They're too burnt out to look for something else but not brave enough to quit without something else lined up.

So I say, go for it.  You're obviously unhappy with your current situation and flexible with your future plans. 


  • Guest
Re: When to resign?
« Reply #8 on: May 24, 2012, 03:28:55 PM »
i am interviewing people right now. Last week,I interviewed a gentleman whose job is about to end. That put a bitter taste in my mouth. When i asked what kind of ideal job he is looking for, I get the feeling he just wants A job so he can feed a family of 7. That just doesn't impress me.

The point is, your altitude changes when you don't have job and looking for a job. Can you still act cool? It will be a lot easier for you to look for a job while you still have a job. I would say suck it up, do the commute and look for a job like a mad dog..


  • Magnum Stache
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Re: When to resign?
« Reply #9 on: May 24, 2012, 03:38:14 PM »
Does your current role allow for working from home at all? I didn't think my boss would go for it, but if you don;t ask, you'll never know. Maybe even try for a couple of days per week.

I have Wednesday working at home now (do most of it on Tuesday night), and it's made me much more positive about work.