1. Act your wage
You may have heard “act your wage” before — the phrase, along with the “quiet quitting” trend, took social media by storm last year.
Thompkins says while many jobs want you to go “above and beyond” and “do all the bells and whistles” while paying you the same rate they hired you with, it’s still possible to find better opportunities and get that promotion without having to “break your back.”
On top of that, if you’re used to giving 120% at work, you could be accused of underperforming when you pull back to just 100%. Thompkins explains once you start taking on extra tasks, whether projects or volunteer events, it could become the expectation.
“If you’re not reaping the benefits of being an overachiever, make sure you’re clocking out at 5:00 sharp,” she said.
2. Make sure you have opportunity for growth
Thompkins says there’s room for growth at all companies, big and small — but sometimes it’s just you who’s not growing.
“This is a reality check conversation that you have to have with yourself,” she advised.
You may see your coworkers getting promoted or people who joined the company after you moving up the ladder faster. Whether you’re not being recognized and awarded for your talent or you’ve simply learned all you can where you are, you need to stop and consider your options.
You could be happy at your job and still want to stick around, or decide it’s time for you to move on and find success elsewhere.
3. Fund your career and investments
Thompkins says while she got her first “big girl job” at 21, she didn’t expect the income to house and feed her for the rest of her life.
While she worked, she started saving up for any potential investment or business ideas she might have down the road — which ended up being writing children’s books.
“When it came time to start my business, I already had the funds ready,” she recounted. “I was able to create supplemental income because I had been saving from my corporate job.”
Similarly, you may want to seek creative ways to invest in yourself too. You could start your own side hustle, learn new skills to add to your resume or even try dipping your toe into the stock market with just your spare change.
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4. Don’t quit without a plan
One viewer on Thompkins’ video advocated for leaving your job immediately at the first sign of trouble and toxicity, but the tech employee cautioned extra care in situations like this, adding you should find your next job before you hand in your resignation.
If you can’t wait to find something else, she suggests being proactive about finding your next opportunity — keep your resume and LinkedIn page up to date and continue to network within your field. But if you’re going to put yourself at risk without any income, Thompkins would strongly urge you to reconsider.
“Do not put yourself in a place to be hungry or homeless, even when the job is toxic,” she said.
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