Abusive Boss Challenges Employee to Make a Living Out of His Hobby, So He Does

In Asia, based on an exit process survey, 85% of employers can foresee when an employee intends to leave his job. These can be ascertained when an employee is often absent, distracted, less efficient, or disengaged.

According to Robert Walters, it is to the employer’s advantage to be aware when an employee plans to leave. First, the employer has the chance to resolve the problem at an early stage and possibly change the employee’s intention to resign. Second, he can stop the employee’s negativity from spreading to others. Third, he can come up with an effective recruitment strategy to immediately fill up the position and cut the company’s loss.

Photo: Pexels/August de Richelieu

So, what are the common reasons why employees quit?

  1. When an employee senses there’s limited growth in the company
  2. When an employee feels that he’s underpaid
  3. When an employee feels unappreciated or undervalued
  4. When there are no more challenges to stimulate the employee’s intellect, motivation, and interest
  5. When corporate culture no longer feels inspiring or it becomes stiffling

But the Original Poster’s reason for quitting his job in this story from Reddit’s popular r/MaliciousCompliance forum has nothing to do with any of the reasons that are cited above.

He resigned because his boss pushed him out, even though he was one of the company’s few talents who had contributed a lot to their growth. He was accused of “spending more time on his hobby” after being abused and exploited, with his extra work not being paid.

Photo: Pexels/Yan Krukov

This is how unjust it all was, as he related under the username u/the_anecdotist135: “I was working for a startup engineering firm, working as a Piping Design engineer. But since it was a start-up firm, we didn’t have a lot of manpower, and the ones we had weren’t as qualified either. I was one of the very few qualified enough to handle a team of my own. The boss trusted me with almost everything. I was like the second in command after the boss, only because I was managing a lot of things on the side on a volunteer basis. Things like paycheck balancing, client meetings, quality assurance, documentation, and other stuff which he should have hired someone else to do. I was good at it, and he took full advantage of it by giving me things to do that were never under my job description.”

OP continued the story by revealing that his boss obtained his help again in improving the company’s website to attract more clients. His nephew, who was a fresh college graduate, had been working on it, but the outcome was mediocre. And so he assigned OP to assist in the website development.

OP was glad to take it on since he had developed a deep interest in UI/UX and even enrolled in an online course. He then spent a full week accomplishing proper information architecture, wireframes, and color guidelines for his boss’s nephew. This resulted in a website that appeared futuristic that his boss was more than glad to approve.

Photo: Pexels/Tranmautritam

However, OP’s work piled up because of the time he spent on the website. But he was confident that he could easily complete it all once they had finalized the website. However, his boss learned about OP’s backlog and called him into his office.

OP wrote, “He started yelling at me for all the ‘responsibilities’ that I didn’t attend to. I calmly told him that I was working on the website and its not a big deal. Told him that I would clear it out as soon as possible. But he wasn’t happy. He asked me why I spent so much time doing something that isn’t even my responsibility. I told him that I was learning about UI/UX and was pretty much interested to learn more. (I obviously never thought about persuing it as a career because frankly I was a mechanical engineer by qualification and didn’t think jumping to IT would be easy).”

His boss didn’t like OP’s answer and told him that he should quit and pursue his “hobby” instead. He spat at him that then he would learn the value of a job that pays.


OP’s response to the challenge? “I kind of got offended because 1. He doesn’t even pay me the worth of things I do for the company and 2. He knew I could cover and yet took this as an opportunity to ‘discipline’ me. I stepped out of his office, went to my desk and put in my resignation, and went home. He called me a couple of times, asked me to revoke my resignation, and then made other people from the organization call me to convince me to come back.”

But OP never looked back. He decided to pursue UI/UX and made a successful career out of it. He’s now working as a product designer in one of the largest organizations with a pay that’s almost 300% more than what he was making as a mechanical engineer.

As for the boss and company he left behind, it started to crash after OP resigned because no one was able to finish the project he had been working on. Then, when the pandemic hit, it went backrupt.

True enough, people reap what they sow.

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