Reddit user u/Crafty7841 posed the question, "What was the reason you left your last job?" and the replies quickly filled with disheartening stories of people being pushed to their breaking points at horribly toxic workplaces. Here's what people shared:
1."They could not go ONE DAY without calling me when I was nearly hospitalized for COVID. There was nothing urgent, but they would have other people on the team text my phone and call me asking questions so it didn’t look like it came directly from my boss. They had me working 80-hour weeks, and it was when they couldn’t let me have ONE sick day that I knew it was time."
2."I had two nervous breakdowns in the three weeks I worked there. Manager said: 'This is the job. Either suck it up or find another.' The day I realized I was done was when I drove to my child's daycare and cried all the way there. I picked up my kid, and she asked, 'Mommy, why are you sad?' She looked sad for me. That was the moment I knew we deserved better. Next day, I fired off four emails to HR, went to my boss's office, handed in my badge, said I quit, and left."
3."I just quit yesterday. I had a coworker attempt to physically assault me, and the company wouldn't do anything about it because this associate made the company millions of dollars a year. I already have two job interviews lined up. Each option would be a 30% pay increase. Best decision I ever made."
4."My boss was work-from-home and made lower-level employees come in. Not only that, when he came in once a week (if that), he made such a big deal about it. Like, he wanted a pat on the back for doing the bare minimum. The worst, all around. So, I put in my two weeks. What’s wild is they refused it. They said they needed me. After two weeks, I found another job and I left anyways. I found out after I left that he spread nasty rumors about me. Guess I made the right call."
5."My friend died in a motorcycle accident. My boss had a thing going on the Saturday of his memorial. He asked me to come in that Saturday and I said, 'No, I have a memorial. My friend died.' I had an arrangement where I studied while working there. I was working 'part-time' and I had to go to classes. We discussed it in the interview. Then, when I couldn't come in, he said, 'If you can't do this for me, I'm going to take away the time I give you to go to class.' Bear in mind, he paid me basically minimum wage for the privilege of being there. He was just a horrible person."
6."I was literally allergic to the job. I was a swimming instructor allergic to chlorine. My body grew resistant to the antihistamines I was using and I had a full-body breakout. It didn't heal for over two months. It only healed once I finally fully removed myself."
7."I worked as maintenance in a giant chicken plant. Super dangerous, smelled awful, was cold and wet all the time, had terrible hours. But, none of that is why I left. I left because they would demand the machines run perfectly all the time, but would not provide the necessary parts because they were 'too expensive.' Zero support from upper management. There, you are just a warm body. They don't care if you live or die. Profit over safety every time."
8."Mine is pretty bad. For context, I am a whitewater raft guide. I left my last company because they were sending me down a river through lightning storms with the instruction to tell guests: 'The raft is rubber. We are completely safe and protected.' We were also instructed to just 'row through the storm,' so we were not supposed to pull over for anything. One guy did this and helped his guests to a safer spot and was yelled at for being late."
9."There was no work/life balance. I had to work past my scheduled finish every day in order to get all the orders out the door. So, most times when I got home, my kids were just getting ready for bed. I had to reschedule a minor surgical appointment because they wouldn't approve my PTO. After I was finally able to get a new date for the appointment (over a year later), they denied my PTO again. I asked for two days. So, I quit. In my new job, I make a bit less and have a longer commute, but I see my family way more, which is worth it."
10."I was the primary line of defense for the mental and physical health of 32 college freshman that didn't want me around. The job also involved being up once a week for most of the night, missing every major event on campus because I had to be home dealing with the aftermath of drunk 18-year-olds and spending a weekend every month up until 2:00 a.m. doing the same. All while trying to finish my senior year of an engineering degree. It's the only job I've ever quit for a reason other than I was moving out of the area. And, I should've done it sooner. I was paid about a hundred dollars a week and got to live for free in a 7' x 10' shoebox."
11."The VP was an incompetent, rude, condescending brat. The president was his daddy and the manager was his brother. He reduced my department by 50% and did not compensate us. He promised to pay overtime, then refused to pay it after the fact because they 'expected me to be a team player.'"
12."I worked at a coffee shop and it got infested with cockroaches. The owner refused to pay for an exterminator. There were a ton of other issues, but that was my final straw."
13."The owner stole nearly $30,000 from me while committing PPP loan fraud to the tune of $7.8 million, and is now serving five and a half years in federal prison."
14."My boss screamed at me after I asked for a 50-cent raise."
15."They gave me a promotion but called it a 'title change' in an attempt to justify not giving me a raise along with it."
16."My boss had a horrible temperament. She and another coworker would start so much drama. She would never hold herself accountable for all the drama she would cause."
17."My work cut me from four days a week at home down to zero because I took a scheduled day off with three-weeks notice. They didn't have a plan in place to cover me being absent for literally one day, then decided that this was somehow my fault because if I had been in the office every day, we would've been able to discuss it. A couple weeks after taking away my ability to work from home, they informed me that they didn't think my job filled 40 hours, so they wanted to pay me part-time, but still expected me to be available 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m Monday–Friday if someone called for tech support. The options presented to me were part-time hours with full-time availability, or take a pay cut and a demotion back to my previous role. Somehow, they were surprised when I turned in my notice a couple of weeks later."
18."Bad environment. I didn’t 'fit in' with the core group. I knew they were never going to promote me and were just milking me for as long as they could. I was slaving away 12 hours there and didn’t get paid what I deserved, nor did I get the respect I deserved. All because I didn’t feel like mingling with them or going to rooftop bars every Friday and would rather be home with my kid and husband, whom I was seriously neglecting. Oh well. Too bad for them because I was damn good."
19."I no longer enjoyed it. I was salaried and the hours kept growing, but the salary stayed the same. The company couldn't keep people, which meant more work was being put on other people's plates to hit increasingly higher targets. I couldn't schedule interviews for other jobs because I was literally always needed at work. I decided to bet on myself and left without something else lined up."
20."Anxiety. It was a call center. I got so anxious every morning that I would throw up."
21."I worked there for two months and didn't see a single paycheck until my third. I had to drive around all day for that job and buy my own supplies."
22."I was hired in with an agreement that I'd be paid X amount. I received my first paycheck, and it was two dollars an hour less than agreed on. I went to the boss to fix what must've been an accidental mistake, and he told me, 'Yeah, I couldn't get the big guy (the owner) to agree to that. I'll try working on him sometime down the road.' I immediately walked outside and pulled my truck around to the garage door, wheeled my tool box over, and started loading it up. Half an hour later, I was out of there. After I got home, he called me and told me to come back Monday because he got the 'big guy' to agree. I told him since he already tried to screw me, unless the big guy added another five dollars an hour, I would be taking my talents elsewhere. He said he couldn't do that. I told him he wouldn't be seeing me Monday then."
23."I wasn’t properly trained for the job. Then, they got mad at me when I wasn’t properly trained. I started working on a different career and let them know I’d stay and help transition someone else in while I went to school. They basically said no and that I had to get more training AND do more work, even though you’re about to leave. They were essentially forcing me out. So, I left and got a part-time job while I went to school and got ACTUAL training for a career."
24."I never got recognized or rewarded for being a top performer. It was confirmed by my management that my work was at a level above my pay rate. But, they wouldn't promote me because 'what else would you do for us if we promoted you?' So, I stopped doing that stuff. If you can't pay somebody for that level of work, you obviously don't find those tasks necessary."
25."The lack of hiring vacant spots and management expecting everyone to 'share the load.' My department went from 52 employees to 46 during the pandemic. It was manageable...barely. Post-pandemic, the call was made to bring everyone back to the office, and we lost more. The department went down to 37. Over the last year, people have been quitting due to overwork and unrealistic expectations. When appealing to management, we were told we were on a hiring freeze. When I quit, the department was down to just under 30 people, and we had a four-month backlog of work. The work we did was to stay compliant with federal regulations. I can't be any more specific than that until the investigation is over."
26."The constant gross behavior of the manager. I complained to HR and followed all the relevant procedures, but in the end, I couldn't take it any more. I did get him fired, but only because I told the CEO in person that he was stealing from the company. He was unemployed within a month. I'm self-employed now, and last I heard, he was having to sell his house because nobody will employ him in the industry locally."
27."I was burned out after working for the same large company (50,000 employees) for 22 years, so I decided doing the same job at a different, smaller company (1,000 employees) would be the change needed to stop feeling burnt out. After a year, I realized that the grass wasn’t greener on the other side of the fence; it was just a different shade of brown. I quit and went into a different field."
28."It was a combination of things, really. My company had been sold less than a year prior, and the new company made a lot of changes. I was essentially demoted because 'this company doesn't have people in your role, so we want you to do this job instead.' Of course the 'new job' was the same job, just with more crap added to my plate. The final nail in the coffin was when our manager berated a highly-respected coworker because she took issue with the fact that our manager's wife (who also worked with us) got special treatment."
29.Finally: "I left because the sentiment was always 'it will get better.' It never got better and always got worse. I was sick of letting my team down because we were never given adequate resources to make it happen. I felt like we were always just squeaking by until the next problem. Also, the walks from corporate were way too often, confusing, and belittling. One person would tell you to do something one way, another person would tell you to do it a completely different way, and yet no one actually had answers. The 50 to 60-hour weeks became too much and I decided to quit and try something new. Retail management is awful."
UGH. And people really have the audacity to say, "Nobody wants to work anymore!" Geeeeee, I wonder why!!!
Note: Submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity.