“Surely I’m worth more than this”
“Surely I’m worth more than this” a new Corporate Crossover stated as she shared with me her reasons about leaving her job to start her own business. Like many of the 400 Corporate Crossovers (women who leave their jobs to create their own business) I spoke with for research on my book, her frustration drove her to leave corporate for good.
Tired of opaque decision-making, poor leadership, bureaucracy, politics, and pointless arguments, one day these women decide that this life is no longer for them. They decide that they are worth more than what putting up with the toxic culture represents, so they decide to leave.
Escaping the toxic culture was the key reason cited why these Corporate Crossovers leave their jobs to create their own businesses. Often in the years or months leading up to their departure they have had significant life events. They may have had a meaningful birthday (typically one ending in a zero), a sick parent, a child or even suffered an illness or personal loss themselves. It is the external life events that make them wake up and say “I am worth more than this.”
Even though 68% of the women I survey are making less in their own business than when they had a job, they would never return to their old life. They love the freedom and flexibility that this choice has given them.
Until organisational culture changes and becomes less toxic, competitive and driven by external marks of success and achievement, women will always take the decision to leave. The sense of pragmatism that comes with a life event means that these women have judged that leaving and setting up their own business to be easier than making large scale organisational change. Even after Executive Coaching in multi-national organisations for 10 years, sadly I think they are right.
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