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20% of Workers Who Switched Jobs Now Regret Their Decision



Diverse group of business people holding a card with sad sign by their faces | 20% of Workers Who Switched Jobs Now Regret Their Decision | featured

Around one in five American workers who switched jobs during the pandemic are now regretting their decision. According to a recent Harris Poll survey, the Great Resignation turned into the Great Regret for some.

RELATED: The Great Resignation Continues As Americans Want New Jobs

20% Of Workers Who Quit Regret Their Decision

Disappointed multiracial millennial friends | 20% Of Workers Who Quit Regret Their Decision 

The Harris Poll survey conducted for USA Today interviewed 2,000 American workers between March 18 to 20. It reported that most workers who switched jobs during the Great Resignation now have serious doubts.

They either regret the move, don’t like their new position or are already looking for a new job. The survey reported that fewer than 4 in 10 quitters feel happy, successful, or valued in their new roles.

In particular, many workers admitted to acting hastily during the pandemic when businesses experienced worker shortages.

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In addition, the pandemic also caused work to adapt to a remote system. It also pushed a lot of workers to experience burnout. 

Kathryn Minshew, CEO of The Muse, an online job board, finds many workers are now second guessing their hasty decision.

“People will make very fast moves,” she noted. A few months in, doubts begin to creep up. Then, they wonder, “Did I just make a mistake?”

26% Don’t Like Their New Job, While 33% Already Want Out

Even the workers who didn’t express regrets about leaving their old job don’t seem happy with their new jobs. 26% of workers who switched jobs during the pandemic say that they don’t like their new work enough to stay.

Meanwhile, around 33% of the same workers say they’re already in the process of looking for a new job. They want something that offers better pay, better working conditions, or better prestige.

So why are 20% of workers regretting their new role? Initially, their decision to switch jobs held much promise. Eventually, the job they landed didn’t turn out as advertised.

30% said their new role is different from their expected role. 36% reported losing work-life balance, while 24% said they miss the old culture in their previous job.

Still, 24% said that they didn’t give enough time to evaluate the decision to leave their old job to switch to a new one. 

Less Than 4 in 10 Workers Who Quit Feel Happy, Successful, or Valued In Their New Roles

Since June, around 4 million workers (3% of total US Employment) switched jobs every month for new and better opportunities.

Experts point to a multitude of factors related to COVID-19 that led to these resignations. This includes a desire to work remotely permanently. Some experienced burnout as they kept filling in for absent co-workers.

Finally, some workers just left their jobs and their industry to start new careers. This typically includes lower paid retail and restaurant workers. Also, some left their jobs to start a business. 

Meanwhile, those who regret leaving their old jobs are not planning to stay in their new jobs for long. 41% of workers say that they just give the new job two to six months to check the fit.

In a separate survey conducted by The Muse, around 20% would leave within a month while 15% would stay between seven to eleven months. 

Boomerang Workers

The numbers seem to suggest that a smaller group of workers might have started bouncing around in multiple jobs. Some are even returning to their old place of work.

These boomerang workers comprise 4.5% of new hires on LinkedIn last year. In comparison, boomerang workers comprised only 3.9%. 

Watch the 60 Minutes video report: Why are Americans choosing to quit their jobs in record numbers?

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Why do you think workers who switched jobs are now unhappy with their new positions? Will you go back to your old job if you found out you didn’t like your new one?

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