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Monday, August 5, 2013

Understanding Labour Laws in Your Job Dilemma: To Leave or Not

A reader wrote this to me recently and I thought it is wise to shed some professional light on it.
“I have just started my career in an upcoming organization – 6 months into it. My close working relationship with the management makes me feel like it is my second home. However, I’m a graduate Civil and Structural Engineer and working as a site supervisor (Foreman) doesn’t offer me much growth career wise.
I have just got an offer from one of my dream companies in the Structural Engineering / construction Industry. I’m to join the team as a trainee engineer with opportunity for growth.
My confusion is that I  need to give my current employer a one month notice and I still do not think he will let me go since I’m their key supervisor and have been assigned their mother project.
The pay in my new job offer is slightly higher (by 5,000) than what I’m getting now. But that is not what I’m looking for. If I terminate my job without the 1 month notice, I will be required to pay the company my one month salary, which I don’t have.
Kindly advice”
From your email, it’s clear you are not satisfied with your current job as it doesn’t give you much experience and it is not in your career line. Also your closeness to management which makes you feel like your work place is a second home seems to tie you to the job which you confess, doesn’t offer you much growth career wise.
It’s good you are in good terms with the management, but this should not prevent you from following your passion in a career where you will grow in your profession. Remember that in any job both the employer and the employee need to gain mutually and experience growth in terms of profits and skills.
If the opportunity does not afford you the ability to develop new, in-demand skills every year, it could be a dead-end job that will become increasingly difficult to leave as your skills become less and less marketable to other employers.
Additionally, you need to take charge of your career. Be informed that making accepting a new job offer is one of the most important career decisions that you can make in your life. Put your interest first and then your employer’s second. Don’t be blinded by your relationship with your employers, so let go the idea that s/he will not let you go.
The other company that gave you a job is your dream company according to what you say. So I want to believe this is a dream come true for you. Grab it!  You have nothing to lose, in any case only risk takers succeed in life; the higher the risk the greater the returns. You will be passionate in your work and not only gain professionally, but also get a better pay.
For Vacation Notice:  The labour laws provide an employer/employee shall give a month notice for any dismissal/ vacation failure to which you are  fined an equivalent of one month’s salary. However, the same laws provide that an employee can give two weeks’ notice in lieu. Meaning you can give a notice of two weeks to your employers who will then pay you half of your salary. You can take the second option.
Lastly, leave in good terms with your current employer. The world is very small and you never know where you might meet each other. Explain to the HR or whoever you report to about your notice until they understand you. Thank them for giving you the opportunity to work at the company and the skills you have gained while there. Remember your employer  may be asked for a recommendation letter and therefore he needs to put you in good light.
Also, let your new company know that you are working and need some time to clear with your current employer. Give them a time period when you can be done.
Remember you are the person to make final decision even if you are persuaded not to leave. Take charge of your Career! You are responsible for your own destiny!
Good luck.

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