The person was a construction manager and was frequently overworked and under considerable pressure.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on May 8, 2023. It has since been updated.
Most of us have experienced an excessive workload, chronic exhaustion and cynicism at some point. Burnout is as real as any clinical ailment, caused by an imbalance between key job demands, job resources and unrealistic expectations. It does not spring up overnight; instead, it builds up gradually until you have no alternative but to leave your toxic workplace. This is a prevalent issue, and one Reddit user, u/Willbily, has shared their experience of being stressed out due to work overload, resulting in them quitting the company. Posted to the most famous r/antiwork subreddit, the story amassed 18.6k upvotes, with people relating to the situation all too well.
The Redditor was a construction manager and was frequently overworked and under considerable pressure. They shared that they had told their boss, the VP in charge, about the workload being too large and that it was not viable since it leads to mistakes and delays. "I had told him in person and in writing multiple times, and after several months of not getting results, I reached out to the company president over the phone and said the same. That yielded no result," they wrote. The Redditor added that a workload too large for construction managers is catastrophic to the company, clients, subcontractors, designers, real estate agents and banks.
When the boss finally did listen to the grievances of the employee, they brushed it off, saying, "Well, get ready because we are going to add two more projects to your plate, and we will not be able to give you additional help." The Redditor resigned upon hearing this statement and no longer wanted to be associated with the boss's ineptitude and lack of comprehension. "I have never seen a faster display of how unqualified a person was for their role. Boy, I thought my boss was unqualified before, but he proved it over the next two weeks," they wrote. In an update, the Redditor mentioned that the company struggled to get them COBRA and a 401k match.
For those unfamiliar, "COBRA is an American program that requires employers to offer their insurance programs to employees after they leave a job amicably for some time." The Reddit user added: "401k is an American program that allows employees to distribute income to a retirement stock market account before taxes are taken. Often employers contribute a certain amount as an employment incentive." The most frustrating aspect of burnout is that leaders are often uneducated about the difference between everyday stress and burnout. When employees disclose burnout to a manager or someone of higher authority, they minimize this cry for help by saying things like "just take the day off" or "sleep on it."
The post struck a chord with many people who faced similar situations and applauded the Redditor for resigning from a toxic workplace.
"It takes an extraordinary amount of mental energy to do your role. Proud of you for recognizing your limits and ensuring everyone would succeed. Unfortunately, the management was overconfident in you and ill-equipped to understand the demands of the role and the risks you mitigated daily," said u/ChinaVaca. "Ugh. I relate to this so much. I right now manage 2.8 million dollars worth of revenue worth of projects, and when I need help, management just tells me to figure it out," shared u/brisketandbeans. "I think this situation aptly demonstrates the point that employees don't quit their jobs, they quit their managers," added u/Piddy3825.