When the appropriate time to leave?

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    I just found out I got a bad review after working 70h-80h weeks nonstop. I kind of feel betrayed by this manager and i'm starting to think that this job isn't worth it. That being said it is my first bad review and I'm not sure if i'll get promoted to senior because of this. I have my CPA exam completed and will be licensed soon, I have two years of public experience. Part of me wants to stay just for senior, but the other part of me really wants better work-life balance and a better environment.


    Wow, talk about a kick in the teeth. Don't leave mid-busy season, that's never a good look.
    Did they give you a path to improve? Are you sitting in a chair 80 hours a week just to log the hours or are you striving for production?
    Quality over quantity.

    Memento Mori - Kingston NY CPA & EA (SUNY Albany 2002)

    FAR-93 11/9/17 (10wks, 250 hrs, Roger 1800+ MCQs, Gleim TB 600+MCQs, SIMs)
    AUD-88 12/7/17 (3 wks, 85 hrs, Roger 1000 MCQs no SIMs hail mary)
    REG-96 1/18/18 (6 wks, 110 hrs, 1400 MCQs, no SIMs)
    BEC-91 2/16/18 (4wks, 90 hrs, 1240 MCQs)



    They gave me some B.S ways to improve, essentially i'm being rolled off the team. Which is fine that client sucked and it was hell. In the review there is one legitimate talking point that I will take away from it, but the rest was all bull-shit, none of my achievements were highlighted and frankly my trust in the manager is gone. Apparently the manager has had a reputation of not being personal, I was never notified ways to improve during the engagement.


    I left a month before what would have been my third busy season, because after all the preaching from the management about how they value efficiency over just the # of hours, they based our raises on # of billable hours.

    I spoke to the head of the Audit Dept and explained that management supposedly fairly allocated work and I met all my deadlines and a lot of times, I finished my jobs way sooner than my peers and then I helped out other teams. I also told him how the rest of mgmt emphasized efficiency. He said he would look into it and decided to match my raise w/ top-tier level raise in my peer group. By then, I was already pissed off and had a good offer from another company (private) on hand. Once the partner told me he would up my raise, I negotiated the job offer I had in hand and got the salary I wanted.

    Two days after the partner told me that he would up my raise, I handed in my letter of resignation and left the firm. After I left, few managers I knew told me that I probably wouldn't be able to come back even if I wanted to and I asked why I would want to come back to public. 3 months later, here I am working 40 hours a week and I have no regrets of leaving public. I put in an extra hour a day here and there, but never worked more than 9 hrs a day. No more detailed time entry. No more traveling. No more expense reports getting rejected, because of some stupid technical reasons. No more yelling from stressed out managers. No more having to manage bunch of different expectations from multiple managers/partners.

    Long story short – I left public after 2 yrs & 1 month and I have no regrets.

    AUD - 99
    BEC - 91
    FAR - 94
    REG - 96
    Done with exam. On with life.

    I definitely commend those who choose to go public. It was a path that I just couldn't sign up for, being that I was older, a dog owner and a homeowner. You have 2 years under your belt and I think that's good. Other people will say you should work longer. Let me give you a good piece of advice about life. There will always be others who give their opinions on what you should do; but understand there is no right or wrong way when it comes to matters like this. You do what you feel is right, for yourself. I'll add one perspective; the economy is at it's peak right now. Unemployment is at it's lowest. There are signs that the economy won't be as hot in 2019. Do you really want to miss out on landing a great job in industry with high comp, just to be further abused the public accounting firms? I comp over 100k with little under 4 years in industry and have worked strictly 40 hours a week. I have about 25k in comp increases before I hit my target salary. The kool-aid never looked so nasty… Most of the greats didn't even finish college. They found their successes by going against what everyone else was doing… The less trodden paths are the ones where you'll find treasures.

    BEC - PASS

    FAR - PASS

    AUD - PASS

    REG - PASS



    I'm in a similar boat. I took on a new role this year on my team. Due to my own insecurities, I questioned the motives of the company with regards to why they wanted me to switch roles. I was assured that this was a great opportunity and that I would be rewarded for my willingness to be a team player. Come promotion time, I was left behind and was “rewarded” with the lowest % raise that I have received since joining the company almost a decade ago. On top of that – my annual reviews have been above average every year that I have been with the company (based on the scoring and where I fall). I completed all my goals without issue and was considered and “above average contributor.” I certainly feel taken advantage of and am actively seeking outside employment…

    Honestly – these things suck, but at the end of the day, you have to remember that it's not personal, it's just business.

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