Bad reasons to stay in a job

#1: “I want to make a difference”

Altruism is noble. A desire to help people is virtuous. It’s OK to want to do so through your job. Working somewhere that aligns with your values is generally a good idea.

But when your professional fulfillment depends on making a positive social impact working for a company you do not control, you’re rolling the dice.

As a regular employee, your agency is limited. Your chances of making a difference entirely depend on the competence and experience of those around you, and the temperament of leadership.

Your ability to feel good about the difference you made depends on your leaders’ ethics, your org’s values, and its mission’s original impetus.

If the org lacks expertise in their problem domain, or sufficient levels of empathy, you might end up making the world worse.

We live in a cult of work-ism that can make you feel like your profession should completely fulfill you. That doesn’t have to be the case. It’s okay if you mainly help others outside your job.