People need jobs to make money. It is a simple fact that guides people’s decisions and often forces them to make choices that lead them to spend most of their day doing things they dislike. While some people do not have any choice, whether they are uneducated, impoverished or unskilled, many others choose to stick with their miserable job because they aren’t sure if they can find another job when they leave.
While the thought of unemployment is scary, especially in the current economic environment, you should not let a fear of failure force you to continue doing work that you despise. By reaching out to other companies, organisations or human resource agencies, you can see what kind of jobs are out there and when there is an opening that fits your skill set, you will be ready to jump.
Ket Thida said that she left her old job as a researcher to begin a new career as an English teacher. She said that her old job required her to go to places like Battambang, Siem Reap and Kampong Cham that she was unfamiliar with, and when she told her company that she was scared of being alone in these places, her company did nothing to help her situation and continued to send her on these unaccompanied trips.
Ket Thida realised that she had language skills that she could use to get a new job, so she quit working as a researcher and found a new job as a teacher at Bun Rany Hun Sen Wat Phnom school and Future Bright School. “I am very happy and satisfied with my new job,” she said.
Tuomo Poutiainen, a chief technical adviser for ILO Better Factories Cambodia, said that knowledge is one of the best ways to prevent workplace exploitation. “It is important to know who at the enterprise is tasked to help to mediate problems and who one can turn to if there indeed is a problem,” he said. “The best protection against being exploited by anyone is to know your rights and responsibilities and to act accordingly.”
Am Samath, a monitoring superviser for LICADHO, an organisation that defends human rights, said that most workers who were exploited by their bosses were afraid of unemployment and facing difficulties in finding other jobs that they might not be qualified for. However, some people are able to rise above this fear and take a leap of faith that they will be able to improve their lives. “They are brave to change their jobs and find something better because they trust in themselves,” he said.
Ket Sophea is another woman who was being dragged down by her old job. As a receptionist for a driving school, she was often asked to work long hours and given few days off. She knew she was being mistreated, but for months she did not have the confidence to make a change. Recently she quit her job and is currently unemployed, but she knows that she will be better off for her decision. “I believe in my abilities,” she said. “So I will have a good job soon.”