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Majority of Canada’s workers ‘rage applying’ to new roles

By Shannon Carranco, writer

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    TORONTO (CTV Network) — You’ve heard of quiet quitting and rage quitting, but have you heard of rage applying? Chances are, you’ve probably done it.

According to a new poll, 67 per cent of Canadian professionals have rage applied in 2023, meaning they’ve applied for another job while already employed because they’re unhappy with their work situation.

The survey, conducted by recruitment specialist firm Robert Walters, involved responses from 2,000 Canadian professionals. More than half of the respondents claimed that they had applied to multiple new jobs within a short timeframe, with 51 per cent claiming a toxic workplace as their main motivation to seek new employment. Nita Chhinzer, an associate professor at the University of Guelph’s Department of Management, believes Canadian employees are taking advantage of record-low unemployment numbers and a tight labour market: “It’s a great opportunity for them to switch jobs.”

Chhinzer said in an interview with that Canadian workers have experienced a continuation of prolonged stress, workplace isolation and a high volume of work.

“Traditionally, people in times of high unemployment are nervous to leave their jobs because they might not get a job somewhere else. So they may actively be applying for work while they’re still employed,” Chhinzer said. “But now people are saying, ‘You know what, maybe the grass is greener somewhere else, maybe there’s a better fitting job for me and I don’t want to be here anymore.’”

Chhinzer told CTV News that Canadian professionals’ relationship with work has changed throughout the pandemic. Employees have switched gears; “it’s not just about what the individual can do for the employer. It’s also about what the employer can do for the individual.”

According to the Robert Walters survey, 23 per cent of employees blamed a bad work-life balance, and 17 per cent pointed to an unmanageable workload as a reason for wanting to leave.

Martin Fox, the managing director of Robert Walters, said in the report that toxic workplace cultures can have a significant effect on employee happiness. A toxic workplace can affect a staff member’s “mental and physical safety in the workplace, productivity levels, ideas generation and innovation.”

According to Chhinzer, the number one thing workplaces can do to combat toxic work environments is to spend more time training their managers.

“We’ve consistently been told that people leave managers, not employers. When managers engage in unfair work practices, and when they don’t give praise or growth opportunities, that is when individuals say that the relationship is not reciprocated.”

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