Leaving the Quality profession after 25 years

Proud Liberal

Quite Involved in Discussions
I'm considering leaving the profession after 25 years experience working at every job position from inspector, layout/CMM operator, quality engineer and quality manager. My strengths are statistics, metrology, computers (especially Excel), training, gaging, and GD&T.

The problem is that I've lost my passion for it. Any suggestions for alternative work opportunities?

Thanks in advance.


Super Moderator
Training, instructing, teaching, whatever you want to call it. I love it myself. Capitalize on what you know. There is a group nearby you that might be fun.

Check with Hampton Scott Tonk (goes by Scott) at Affiliated Educational Consultants, Ltd., Harwood Heights (Chicago area) Il, 60706, 708-867-5755

Kevin Mader

One of THE Original Covers!
I second Randy's motion. I think that folks like you who have come up through the ranks can offer valuable insight to those in and out of the Quality field to understand quality concepts and activities.

Take a time-out, then see if you find your passion again.

Good luck Zeno!!



Before completely leaving, one factor may be the industry that you are involved in. I had been in automotive quality for about 14 years and was totally burned out. Jobs at Burger King looked appealing! I said that if I ever got out I would never go back to automotive quality. :frust: I went into a quality manager role in a non-automotive industry and loved it! Of course that situation may have been unique, because I had the greatest support that I had ever experienced from Top Management. These guys really walked the talk. I had the opportunity to move into manufacturing management there and accepted the position. I also enjoyed it. So much of what I had learned in quality applied, plus I saw what it was like on the other side. Unfortunately, the business unit I was involved with was heavily dependent on the tech market, was shut down and I lost my job. But I am thankful for the experience and the opportunity to work with people who had vision, charisma, and backed you all the way.

Well, guess what I had to go back to? Never say never.

Greg B

Proud Liberal,

I agree with Randy and Kevin. Use that Knowledge that you have accumulated to teach others. Write some cool QA programs in Excel. Us computer nerds are always on the look out for some cool tool to manage our data or make things easier.
I felt like leaving a few months back but then found this site and the people in it have really stimulated my thought processes and got me back on track. I don't feel as alone as I once did because now I know that there are a lot more QA professionals out there having the same problems and issues that I have but we can also share our highs here. This place is like Cheers....everone knows your name (corny but true).
I like the fact that I get feedback (Positive or otherwise is needed to evaluate my suggestions or work)

Take care

Greg B


I'm going to take a different tack. If you "lost your passion", then where does your "passion" lay? Several years ago, I left manufacturing because I lost interest. I got back into auto repair (what I grew up doing). I owned a shop, which lead to teaching auto mechanics, which lead to developing training programs, which lead to teaching quality, which lead back to manufacturing. Along the way, I gained not only valuable insight, but I regained the passion for manufacturing...but in a slightly different context.

Follow your passion.


Quite Involved in Discussions
How about CEO. Why not put someone in charge who has a real commitment to Quality. Toooooo many Accountants, not that you should not watch cash flow. Sound like a poll!!


At least you could

tjlee said:
Well, guess what I had to go back to? Never say never.

So, you went back. Good for you. I tried all those bridges and discovered that when you're gone, you're gone. As cordial as the departure was, the is very little concern for your plight after you have left. Working in the "Q" field since 1966, it was emotionally devastating to realize that your skills acquired were not as important as your age. Now, as an Office Manager for a small company, many of the disciplines learned in other positions have increased my value to this company. Enough to make a part-time position into a full-time one. Every successful company deals with all the issues discussed in the Cove, to a point. Quotations, Bills of materials, Purchase Orders, Customer Contact, Satisfaction Measurements, Scheduling, Accuracy Requirements, Equipment Maintenance, Profit Margins, etc., are every business' concerns. The big difference now is that instead of an Office Staff of 15-30, there is only 2. No room for daydreaming about effectiveness and other pie in the sky ideas afforded to those that are surrounded by a myriad of "Professionals". Effectiveness is measured in $$$. Period. Are we doing good? Improvements are made "on the fly" and tomorrow is another day. It took awhile to adjust, but, I'm coming around. I also have ample time during the work day to do what I enjoy. Visit the Forums. Behind every cloud................... ;) :smokin:

Cari Spears

Super Moderator
Super Moderator
I have also worked my way up the ranks in the Quality field, inspector, chief inspector, QA Manager/Mgt.Rep. All in the automotive industry - primarily metal stamping, though I did a few short stints in other things. I started out in large production environments. When I got burnt out, I switched to automotive prototype sheetmetal. I found it much more interesting - but alas - within 5-6 years I had had enough of QA and the automotive industry. I now work as the Purchasing Agent in a machine detail shop. I am still the Management Rep though. When I found the ad in the paper it stated "ISO Manager w/ Purchasing. During the interview I related my meager purchasing experience - I ran the tool crib at one job in the past. :rolleyes:

I am so digging this arrangement. Now when the phone rings - it is usually a vendor trying to woo me, instead of a disgruntled customer. No one calls the QA Manager to say "Good job on those parts" (the plant managers get those calls!)

It also makes it easier on my relations in the shop. Now people are happy to see me - because it is not always a problem. I am the hero because I found their LH, oversized, blue diamond coated, metric tap and we can get it today!!

M Greenaway

Feeling well burnt out I must admit :(

Have changed jobs many times of the years looking for that elusive company that 'takes quality seriously' - have failed to find it in all instances, from the small business to the multi-national.
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