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12 reasons why you might quit your job this year

A survey conducted by Deloitte indicates that by the year 2020, two in three Millennials are expected to hand in their resignation.

But it’s not just a salary issue, and according to research from Psych Tests, turnover isn’t a plague of the young either. The researchers call attention to factors that employers will need to look out for if they hope to keep talented employees, both younger and older.

Analyzing data from nearly 500 people who took their Turnover Probability Test, PsychTests’ researchers found the reasons for quitting weren’t limited to one or two grievances, and were not the same across generations.

Here’s what their study revealed:


Reason 1: Practicality (long commute, company in bad neighbourhood, etc.)

Millennials: 31%

Generation X: 38%

Baby Boomers: 37%

Millennials are willing to tolerate some inconveniences for a good job, but Generation Xers and Boomers are less likely to do so.


Reason 2: Personal issues (illness, care for an ailing family member, etc.)

Millennials: 40%

Generation X: 32%

Baby Boomers: 40%

Surprisingly, both Millennials and Boomers are equally likely to quit their job to become a caregiver, or if their own well-being was at risk.


Reason 3: Lack of work-life balance

Millennials: 50%

Generation X: 43%

Baby Boomers: 40%

Millennials want to be able to set clear boundaries between their work life and their personal life. While they are dedicated to their job, they clearly grasp the concept of working to live, not living to work.


Reason 4: Office politics

Millennials: 39%

Generation X: 50%

Baby Boomers: 42%

Some people are willing to do anything to reach the top of the ladder, including sucking up to the boss, stealing credit for good ideas, gossiping or spreading rumours, as well as backstabbing and lying. This particular pet peeve bothers Generation Xers the most, as many of them are in the prime of their career and have worked hard to climb the ranks.


Reason 5: Sexual harassment

Millennials: 45%

Generation X: 40%

Baby Boomers: 42%

All three generations seem to agree that sexual harassment does not belong in the workplace, with nearly half showing a willingness to quit as a result of being exposed to inappropriate and unwanted advances in the office.


Reason 6: Bullying

Millennials: 52%

Generation X: 50%

Baby Boomers: 58%

Bullying isn’t limited to the schoolyard any more, and perhaps never was. It’s an issue that employers need to take a look at, as the impact of workplace bullying on employees can be quite serious. More than half of the three generations would quit if they were bullied .


Reason 7: Micromanagement

Millennials: 33%

Generation X: 36%

Baby Boomers: 47%

A nit-picking, controlling manager is enough to drive any employee crazy, but it appears to be a major pet peeve for almost half of Baby Boomers.

This may be particularly true for those who have decades of work experience and therefore, don’t want or need to have their hand held by overly involved micromanaging superiors at work.


Reason 8: Being underpaid or undercompensated

Millennials: 54%

Generation X: 45%

Baby Boomers: 44%

An unfair salary isn’t the only reason Millennials would quit, but it is one of the main ones. Most Millennials are likely to know the salary standards of their industry, and are not afraid to ask for what they want. They may also be more willing than other generations to risk instability and seek employment elsewhere if their salary desires are not met, a luxury that many Generation Xers and Boomers cannot afford, given their mortgages, other debt, and a growing family.


Reason 9: No room for growth or advancement

Millennials: 53%

Generation X: 49%

Baby Boomers: 33%

With many Millennials starting their career or wanting to firmly establish it, moving up is important. The Millennials hired today are likely to want to be the managers of tomorrow.


Reason 10: Boredom and/or a lack of challenge

Millennials: 50%

Generation X: 47%

Baby Boomers: 54%

While a lack of upward mobility may not matter much to Boomers – as many may have already climbed to the top of the ranks – a lack of challenge does bother them. Baby Boomers don’t mind hard work and want their skills to be put to good use. They hate to be bored and unproductive, as do Millennials and Generation Xers, to a slightly lesser degree.


Reason 11: Starting a business

Millennials: 36%

Generation X: 29%

Baby Boomers: 30%

More than a third of Millennials have entrepreneurial aspirations, which means if the right opportunity came along, they would be willing to leave a steady, stable job to break out on their own into the business world.


Reason 12: Struggling company

Millennials: 26%

Generation X: 27%

Baby Boomers: 16%


If a company is struggling financially, some Millennials and Generation Xers won’t hesitate to abandon ship. Boomers, to a much lesser extent. But loyalty and organizational commitment isn’t something these generational groups take lightly. As PsychTests’ stats reveal, most employees are willing to stick with their company through thick and thin.

“In terms of likelihood of turnover, our study revealed no significant differences between groups,” explains Dr. Ilona Jerabek, President of PsychTests.

“Essentially, Millennials are no more likely than other cohorts to quit their job, which may be counter to what many organizations have been led to believe as a result of back-lashing articles denouncing Millennial employees.

“What’s important for managers to take note of is that, of all the reasons why employees would quit their job, at least half are a result of circumstances that can be controlled.

“For example, bullying, harassment, and office politics are issues managers must take more seriously, and perhaps even go as far as to adopt a no-tolerance policy.

“Micromanaging tendencies can be avoided by promoting managers based on more than just their technical knowledge – they must also have the emotional intelligence and personality to lead. The point is, when it comes to turnover, it’s not an external issue; it’s not a simple matter of selfish, money-hungry employees.

“If your company’s turnover rate is high (and/or higher than the average rates in your industry), it’s time to take a serious look at not just your hiring process, but also engagement, morale, employee compensation, employee motivation, and stress levels company wide.”

Want to assess your likelihood of quitting? Check out testyourself.psychtests.com/testid/3899.

To learn more about psychological testing, download this free eBook: http://hrtests.archprofile.com/ personality-tests-in-hr.

PsychTests AIM Inc. originally appeared on the internet scene in 1996.

Since its inception, it has become a pre-eminent provider of psychological assessment products and services to human resource personnel, therapists, academics, researchers and a host of other professionals around the world.

                                                                                                                                                       – Dr Ilona Jerabek


• Dr. Ilona Jerabek is President of PsychTests AIM Inc., and can be reached at ilona@psychtests.com. PsychTests AIM Inc. staff is comprised of a dedicated team of psychologists, test developers, researchers, statisticians, writers, and artificial intelligence experts (see ARCHProfile.com). The company’s research division, Plumeus Inc., is supported in part by Research and Development Tax Credit awarded by Industry Canada.


Posted: Jul 3, 2019

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