The Hard Choice of Quitting Job in Africa. Work Design That Need to be Rethink
The year 2021 has been an amazing year. Here on LinkedIn millions of people were busy reading useful content on Career, Sales, Marketing and Tips that can aid meaningful life.
So many discussions on mental health, Emotional Intelligence, toxic workplace, quitting job, finding job and coping with live in the COVID-19 era can be found on this platform by influencers, writers and leading authorities on such topic.
We read things on line that prescribe what we should do and not to do in a given circumstances. Still we use our discretion. Because most of what we read online are be written by human like us. We only have favorites. And we respect people that tells the actual stories of their life. People with diverse kind of experience. People with wealth of exposure. People that are ahead of us in research and academia.
There are some mobile applications and some smartphones that are meant for specific region of the world. The user manual would tell you that some of these features in this phone may likely not work in your country or region. In the same way, there are advises or suggestions that work well in some countries that is not applicable in another country.
Let us take the idea of “quitting.” Quitting a career in America can seems to be easy by employees. They would even provide statistics to back it up. Like 15 million of Americans resigned from their job as at May 2021. You see in Africa, quitting a job is like attempting self-suicide. The exposure in foreign country and how they are being enlighten on the importance of Safeguarding Their Mental Health hasn’t been well known in Nigeria. We go to work day by day in a place where business owners have no respect for faculty. We work under stress. We wake up as early as we can 3 to 4 hours head for 8am job. Our 8 to 5 job in actual time is 4am to 11pm.
How many hours do we spend sleeping? If we are being deprived of regular 8 hours sleep, where would our creativity comes from? The road traffic is hectic. The body pains.
The annoying part after is working in a too toxic office. When your office is toxic as a system, you would not be able to settle your head. You suffer before going to work. You suffer at work. You suffer going home. How do you intend to ensure work-life balance? If you are not psychologically strong there is tendency of pouring the annoyance of stress to people at home.
Employee welfare in many African countries are nothing to write home about. Some HR policies doesn’t not fit workers. Money are being deducted from employee gross earning without adequate sense on how is being remitted. Workers do not have good healthcare plan that can cover their needs. Some companies do not even provide this at all. Working for a company at stretch and there is no pension savings. This does not sound. Difficulty in granting workers sick leave or annual leave. Scientist are not so much concern about how to tackle Malaria and Typhoid like they are so busy with COVID. Workplace related diseases are so critical in this country. Workers work for you and still use their hard-earned currency to purchase drugs for self.
Many Nigerian workers are rather sacked or dismissed on the job. We found quitting to be very hard. No matter how hard working you are companies in Lagos can easily replace you when your service is no longer needed. There are thousands of people that would do that job that you refused to do for 50k in this city. They would even do it for 25k and are even ready to work round the clock. This is because the economy is a mess. The over population is being taken for granted. Government are folding their hands since they have children schooling and working abroad. And infact, we do not know our worth. We give ourselves too cheap to some of these foreigners. These foreigners work in conjunction with our black bosses. Our black bosses do tell them how best to threat us in the harsh way using carrot and stick style. They educate the expatriate on our weakness. We like food and we like cannot afford not to work because our society has a way it has been designed.
With the level of exposure that we have gotten on site like LinkedIn. Many have been challenged to take a bold step on their career. We have read articles, stories, post and newsletters of people that challenged their own status quo by quitting their job and still bounce back better. It is a very big risk to take. Life is about risk. Nothing ventured nothing gained. Many content writers have shared inspiring stories online that are very impactful on workers life. We need a shift in many things in Africa. If remote job can work successfully in abroad. It should work here in Nigeria. In Nigeria, we must also Think and grow rich like America. The concept of work is not about abusing our Mental Health. Work is design to make life easier. Workers should be valued and appreciated. Managing Directors, Chief Operating Officers, Human Resource Executive, Labor Unit, International Labor Organization, Chartered Institute of Personnel Management, Divisional Exec and other Managers in Functional Areas of Business should rethink work in Africa.
When people work for a firm that should be made better than you found them. The ideas of seeing people as an asset that companies stated in their diary or corporate website is manipulative. Employees are not object. Treat them like human. Have a Guidance and Counselling unit that would address issues facing your staff. Don’t feel because Government is not watching you means you should maltreat her citizen. Lack of Government Intervention in the affair of public and private sectors makes companies and their owners to be so arrogant and treat Nigerian workers like slave.
So gone are the days when people waited to be sack. People are now on the rise of sacking themselves for safety. The scarcity of water does not call for a man to drink his own urine. You would never know what is waiting for you until you act. Why staying on a job that is not supporting your well-being? In the end good health is wealth.
Decision shapes us. Work in a company where there is Unit called Love Department. Have fun.
Happy New 2022.
You will succeed.