Career crisis: Staff most likely to quit at this age

Career crisis: Staff most likely to quit at this age

‘Thirty, flirty & thriving’ - the mantra that Jennifer Garner’s character wished, to be at the pinnacle of her career in 13 going on 30, may be as fictitious as the wishing dust that propelled her into the future. Research has found that the career crisis actually peaks in those in the run up to turning 30, with the age marking a time when most people want to switch careers.

The study, conducted by appliance manufacturer, Vorwerk, found that just 13% of UK adults enjoy their work, and nearly one in ten (nine per cent) go as far as to say that they hate their jobs.

The research also found that the motivations to switch roles differed between men and women.

Top five motivations to change






Better work life balance



Less pressure



Better career progression



Flexible hours



However, whilst just under half (44%) dream of making a career switch, only 20% have gone for it. But, what’s stopping them? 33% of men and 27% of women cite that switching career is too risky and 19% and 21%, respectively, don’t know where to start. Around one in five men and women say they don’t know what else to do.

With money and a better work-life balance cited as the top reasons to switch roles, it’s important for HR to be there to alleviate any woes that could be making their workers lives miserable. Or, they could take the controversial decision to encourage their workers to leave and pursue their passions, like ListenTrust's CEO, Craig Handley. The boss of a call centre in Mexico, readily admits that when he hires a new worker, he hopes they will leave.

"The first day they come into work with us, we tell them that were hiring them and training them to quit," Handley tells CNBC. "None of my employees ever woke up at 10 years old and put on a headset and sat down and pretended they were answering customer service or sales calls," he said. "That wasn't anybody's dream. My dream is to build a world-class call centre, it's not theirs."

The obliging CEO has also launched a “dream trust”, a programme which helps employees identify and achieve their own life goals. Handley offers training and development programmes to aid his workers in realising their own career aspirations. The trust gives $3,000 each month to help coach his employees and run the programme alongside his call centre business.

"We've had over 50 dreams already granted, from buying a house to successfully battling addiction," Handley said. "They're all pretty meaningful." And these benevolent benefits have also had an impact on retention; as turnover has fallen from 24% to just four per cent.

“We do pay probably better than most companies,” added the CEO, “but I don't want people coming to us for money. I want them coming because they want to be engaged with what we're doing, they care about the dream trust program and they have dreams of their own."

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