According to data from the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, about one out of three of the class of new company freshmen who entered companies in April 2015 have left their place of employment.
But going through with quitting a job, it seems, isn't all that easy.
To explore this phenomena further, Weekly Playboy (Feb 25) conducted a survey of 100 salaried workers in their 20s and 30s.
"When I submitted my resignation request form to the company, it wasn't accepted for such reasons given as 'The size of the characters you wrote was too large,' or 'The positions of the carriage returns at the ends of lines were strange,' and all sorts of reasons," as a 27-year-old employed in public relations put it.
"Two weeks before I planned to quit, I was assigned to a team for a project scheduled to commence six months later," said a 35-year-old employed by a consulting firm.
A 29-year-old worker in a real estate firm was lectured, "The company spent quite a bit of money to treat you to meals and drinks. Is this how you show your gratitude?"
It used to be that pawaa hara (power harassment) was applied to pressure undesired workers to leave. But now with the labor shortage in full swing, more companies are fighting tenaciously to thwart some workers from leaving -- an activity referred to as yame-hara (quit harassment), i.e., the pressuring of workers not to leave their jobs.
In addition to psychological warfare, in worst cases the activities have been known to turn violent.
At a party, a 30-year-old trading firm was informed, "You should demonstrate your recollections of gratitude to Mr So-and-so, who did such a good job of looking after you, by downing a lot of booze." Recalling the experience, he commented, "Getting plied with drinks until I was on the verge of collapse was sheer hell."
In an even worse case, a 24-year-old employed by a construction firm was criticized by a superior who said, "Well! You're leaving the construction business, even though you know we're facing a worker shortage.
"At my last work site," he related, "I got hurt when I slipped while walking on a steel beam 20 meters above the ground, and was left unattended for one hour."
"Yame-hara is an act of retribution against bosses at work who feel the worker's quitting causes them to lose face," says Soichiro Ishihara, author of a work titled "Assessing Adult Power." "Before submitting one's request to resign, it can be effective to first engage in a consultation. By maintaining confidence in one's self and requesting a consultation will help the superior save face, and may prevent getting subjected to yame-hara.
"One point to keep in mind is to definitely avoid making it seem as if the company is at fault, by making self-effacing statements to the effect that, 'It will be better for the company if I were to depart,'" Ishihara added.© Japan Today