An Employment Policy That Would Change My Life

Employers should have a policies in place that provide protections to employees who impulsively quite their jobs.

If an employee quits with a no call/no show or by walking off the shift in a moment of passion or overwhelming emotion, the employer should give them no more than a week to compose themselves, and then call them. “Are you sure you want to be done working with our company?”

At this point the employee would be offered a chance to come back under the condition that soul searching and self-inquiry will be done to identify the issues that resulted in the impulsive decision to leave before, and that work will be done to hopefully prevent anything like that from happening again.

But if it does happen again, the company could still let the employee back in again. Maybe with a temporary pay cut until consistency is re-established.

Look. If any of this sounds ridiculous, I understand.

Maybe you have not spent your life unable to hold jobs like I have.

But people like me exist.

And it’s not that we’re lazy.

Sometimes I am lazy, but that’s not the only reason I struggle to work. And even if it was the only reason, there would be underlying reasons beneath that reason.

I am not going to just be lazy for no reason. When I am lazy, it’s because I am living a life out of alignment, or avoiding responsibilities, procrastinating, or stuck in bad habit loops. All causes have deeper causes. The deeper causes have core causes.

Finding the cause and addressing the issue is not always easy. But it would be easier if we had systems in place to help humans feel better about themselves when they slip up.

I have walked out on jobs before, and regretted it five minutes later. Why did I do that? You might think I deserved to be unemployed then. But I don’t think that’s the case. There was something deeper going on.

I felt ashamed of myself for quitting. I felt like a failure. I felt useless, defective.

What if my employer had called me a week later and said, “We have a counseling program you’re invited to get involved in. We’d love it if you’d try that out and come back and work for us?”

My whole life story would be invariably different if that’s how it worked.

And that’s how we make a better future. By making the future what the past would have been in our ideal world.

People could abuse a system that lets workers come back after fall outs, absolutely.

But abuse would be easy to detect, and could be dealt with on a case by case basis.

Flexibility is the future. In the end, a flexible system makes everything more efficient and effective.

I understand that there are risks and costs associated with these ideas.

What’s more expensive, and uses more time and money?

Hiring one person, then re-hiring them again one, two, maybe three times?

Or hiring a person. Losing the person when they impulsively quit. Interviewing more candidates. Selecting the right candidate. Hiring them. Potentially losing them when they impulsively quit…

When an employer acknowledges and accepts an employee’s humanity and works with the person within their human limitations, trust is built. It’s a relationship. There is security in that, and potential longevity.

It is 2018. Who wants to do soulless work to pay the bills anymore? Who wants to be treated like a generic cog in a machine?

We’re human beings. Let’s live like it, act like it, and work like it.

Also published on Medium.