The recruiter’s perspective: When quitting is not failure…

So, Sep Blatter finally resigned last week amid much conjecture and speculation. For those of you that have been following the FIFA scandals of recent months, you will have seen all the press coverage about corruption and bribery at FIFA. I don’t know the ins and outs of Blatter’s resignation (only he does), we just have to let the current investigations by the US and Swiss authorities run their course. For those of you that don’t care about football, don’t panic, I won’t bore you with the details, but it got me thinking about quitting in general. Most people view quitting as some sort of failure on their part.


Is clinging on to some job, dream, or partner really the best thing – should we all hang on to the bitter end, despite all the signs?

There is frequently a reluctance to quit in part because failure is still seen to be a stigma. Often, people don’t quit because they don’t want to be seen as having failed. Maybe it’s time to reconsider failure. While I was at Facebook, some of the software engineers would walk around the office with ‘Fail Fast’ T-shirts. It’s an adage that is oft quoted in the start-up world. It’s seen as better to mess up quickly so you can figure out what works and then move on from it. As Rob Shelton, global innovation chief at PwC told Business Insider, ‘innovation should follow a scientific process….it’s about having a hypothesis and testing it.’ Sometimes you have to stumble along a few ‘wrong paths’ until you discover the ‘right one’. As Thomas Edison, the inventor of the light bulb, once said: ‘I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.’

So, there it is, failure can be your friend. There is a time to walk away and cash your chips in and sometimes it’s necessary. Stuck in a job you hate? Then start looking for a new one. Don’t understand why you don’t have success in your job applications or interviews? Then stop what you’re doing and try something new. You always have choices and sometimes the ‘right’ options only become clear when you’ve tried everything else.

Luisa @ Henley Careers