To resign or not to resign? It’s a tough question with no simple answer.

More and more, we are seeing resignations creeping into the workplace as ethics and corporate social responsibility have become an increasingly influential factor in the way businesses operate and the way in which employees go about their jobs.

I can only speculate whether the evolution towards a more ethical mindset is driven by a genuine awareness and desire to be more fair or whether it has simply been driven by the increasingly influential voice of the media who simply want a scandalous story. I’m not informed enough to make that call so if it’s all the same to you, I’ll let you pass judgment on that one.

I don’t want to get into a deep philosophical debate about that one because it’s not the purpose of my piece. There is the perception though that there are now more resignations than there were previously. This may or may not be supported by stats but it is just a perception I get.

In fact, I’m intrigued by the dilemma that a resignation from your job would pose. And to be clear, I’m not talking about the type of resignation you would hand in when you move away from a job or you move from one company to another.

I’m talking about the type of resignation we saw yesterday when a politician, Baroness Sayeeda Warsi to be precise, resigned because of her disagreement with government policy.

The topic itself is very much a difficult one in that it is the stance taken on the Palestine-Israel conflict. Baroness Warsi herself tweeted:

I mean, I never knew that the governement had a policy on Gaza.

Whether you (member of the public) disagree with government policy on Gaza is irrelevant when asking the question: should she have resigned as a senior minister at the foreign office?

On the one hand you can support her; she made a clear and strong stance, she abided by her  principles, she’s put the issue very much into the public limelight, she showed a ‘human’ side to politicians, it was a brave decision.

On the other hand you can criticise her for; giving up when the going got tough, throwing her toys out of the pram, not staying and fighting for what she believed to be right, trying to get herself a big story to raise her profile.

If I’m honest, they’re all fair points and legitimate arguments. And the truth of the matter is, only she can make that decision and only she knows why she made the decision she did.

I’ve heard the argument that if she cared so passionately about the subject to resign, why has she continued to support Mr Cameron’s leadership and the Conservatives as a party?

And this raises the point that resignations aren’t always as important as they appear. Aside from people caught up in serious scandals, ministers often appear back in a senior position within a matter of months with an enhanced reputation. That’s the game of politics I’m afraid.

If I were in her position, I’d be inclined to stay and fight. It’s often argued that the best way to influence something is by being a part of it. Having said that, what do you think she was doing in government? Keeping schtum? She was obviously trying to win with her arguments but there comes a point when you are mentally drained by it all and you have to give in.

Sometimes, a resignation can be the only way out for personal reasons and to keep your sanity. Sometimes, it takes a high-profile shock resignation to ignite some kind of favourable response.

That’s why the question of whether someone should resign or not throws up more questions than it answers. Only Sayeeda Warsi knows how far she could’ve gone by arguing her case in government.




The article’s featured image was taken from and I make no ownership claim of this image, May be the subject to copyright.


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