Career Advice: Getting Fired Vs Quitting

This article will shed some light on the differences between getting fired and quitting.

So, it's that time again; sour economy and lots of layoffs. Unfortunately, right now there are lots of families with one or more adults without work. Let's assume that most of these people were fired, shall we?

They were laid off. Although it's a devastating blow, there can be some positives about being laid off: some companies offer severance pay, which can be pretty significant if you were with the company for a long time, and you can also apply for unemployment, and all at the same time, be looking for a new job. In addition, some companies will even fully vest you in your 401k! Of course, on the down side, you will have to tell your future employer that you were laid off, if you were indeed laid off because of circumstances out of your control like some big cuts in finances within the company. If that was the case, it probably wasn't anything very personal, and your future employer will probably understand, especially with so many people being laid off when the economy goes sour. However, it is a totally different story if you got fired for a reason that was completely your fault. Unfortunately, some circumstances where people get fired happen after an employee acts very inappropriately around a boss, coworker, or God forbid, a client. If any of these things occurred, it might be very difficult to tell your new future employer why you had to leave your last job. It also might be harder to get a new job.

What if you just aren't happy at your job, and you want to quit? There are of course, positives and negatives to this situation, just like every other situation. If you quit, you won't be eligible for unemployment or severance, since you voluntarily gave up your job. Your 401k will not become fully vested because you quit. In hard times, it's usually really best to stay with your job, especially if you have a family at home, with mouths to feed. Unless it is absolutely detrimental to your mental or physical health, you should most likely try to stick it out and just be thankful that you have a job. However, if that is absolutely not possible, quitting may be your only option.

One plus about quitting your job is that you will know ahead of time that you are quitting, and it will not come as a shock, as being fired or laid off usually does. Those who are fired or laid off will usually have no idea that they are about to be let go, and therefore, not have been looking for a job all along. However, if you quit, you can be looking for a job as soon as you decide to quit, and then you can go right to a new job, without taking an unpaid time, if you are so lucky. Another good thing about quitting is that you will not have any embarrassing story that you will have to explain away to your future boss about why you got fired, or some sob story about how you got laid off. The company wanted to keep you; it was you who rejected them, not the other way around. It's usually better to be the one who quit than the one who was fired, in terms of getting a new job.

If you have a choice in the matter, of course it's better to quit than to be laid off. Of course, most people don't have a choice. The only thing you can do is work your hardest, and hope for the best. If you really do work hard and give your company 110%, work as a team player, act ethically, and be loyal to your company, you hopefully will not have to deal with being fired or laid off.

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