#1 – My company sucks. They didn’t give me my annual raise.
Show me the line in your employment contract where it says you are guaranteed a raise annually and I’ll be the first to back you up on your complaint. In my experience, those days died 50+ years ago. Along with guaranteed life-time employment, a gold watch, retirement package. Employees today are a businesses-of-one. If we want a raise, we must build a strategy to earn it. If we aren’t making the money we think we deserve, we need to find a new client (a.k.a. employer who will pay our desired rate). If we can’t find an employer who will pay what we want, we’ve got two options: Stay where we are and be grateful, or build our skills in an area that will command more pay.
#2 – My job stinks. Nobody has any fun at the office. All we do is work.
If work feels that bad, then you are working for the wrong employer and/or doing the wrong kind of work. That’s your problem, not theirs. Are you chained to that desk? Are you bound by some iron-clad contract to never leave? If you don’t like the environment, find a new one. Nobody is holding you hostage.
#3 – I hate my career, but I can’t start over. Nobody will pay me as much as I’m making now.
Wow. You know you are overpaid, and yet, you aren’t just the least bit worried this will eventually catch up with you? If you know you are highly paid, your company will eventually know it too. I’d say it’s time to up your game or re-adjust your spending habits. Why? It’s only a matter of time before you find yourself looking for lower-paying positions. Who’s going to want to hire you when they see how much money you made before? They’ll think, “Oh. He’ll leave us the moment he can make more money.” Which is true. That high-paying salary is going to become a ball-n-chain in your future.
#4 – I need to quit my job. But, I’m due for a promotion and I want what’s coming to me.
You are up for a promotion and more money, but you hate your job? So, you are going to accept the role and continue to hate your situation. Makes a lot of sense. Once you are in that new role, you’ll be saying #3. See above.
#5 – My employer is so obnoxious. They waste a ton of money on stupid benefits like holiday parties, outings and team building exercises. Why can’t they be smart and use the money for raises?
A person who works only for the money is a person who ends up struggling to find anyone to network with in the future. Every job is temporary. Not establishing solid relationships with co-workers now will negatively affect you later. These are the people that can network you into a job someday. Let me say it again: EVERY job is temporary. Anyone who doesn’t see the value in company-sponsored relationship building opportunities is wasting a valuable career tool.