With a new job offer in hand you are finally released. Delivered from the daily torture of a job you despise. You are probably tempted to finally tell your boss what you think of the 4 o’clock meetings that run till 6, why the company will continue to lose money (because they don’t listen to you! Duh!) or how awful their benefits are.
Regardless of the circumstances, take a deep breath and calm down. This is a time when you have a choice: you can resign and preserve relationships with the people you value or you can burn a lot of bridges.
Keep in mind: You get all the fun. You get to work your remaining two weeks secure in the knowledge that there really is an end.
Working in HR for a long time, I’ve seen the good, the bad and the ugly when it comes to workplace resignations.
But this is not a post talking about the worst resignation I’ve ever witnessed or telling you how to do a music video resignation. Instead I want to talk about how to leave your company with class. A couple suggestions:
- Give notice – Two weeks is standard. Three plus weeks is great.
- Be professional– don’t walk around the office with a smirk/grin that screams “later bitches!” Instead, be polite, thank those who have helped you and work closely with your co-workers to transition your work.
- Preserve – create backup or help documentation that will help the new person in your position. Your brain is clogged full of company specific information. If you can download that or document it please do.
- It’s not personal – some companies make a big deal of it when an employee leaves. Others do not. Whatever method your company uses, don’t take it personal if they get you a cake but there is no happy hour or if all you get is a resignation announcement. You are leaving.
- Be Available – No you don’t need to keep working 50 hours a week but be available to help with the transition. Taking 3 hour lunch breaks at this point is un-necessary. Just help your remaining co-workers out.
But think about the the effect this could have on your reputation later down the road. To all your Facebook friends you may be a hero but a future employer may see your video resignation as immature at best or think you are a jerk at worst. Regardless of how you do it, remember that when you resign from your job you have a choice: you can be remembered as the one that got away or the jerk who aired your grievances on YouTube.