Chances are, you won’t stay at the same job the entirety of your life, so having the tools in your toolbox on how to properly quit without burning any bridges will be crucial. Now before you decide to hand in that resignation letter, you really need to get to the bottom of why you are quitting.
A few reasons to quit:
- A toxic work culture.
- No room for career growth.
- You have a new opportunity to advance in your career.
- The company no longer aligns with your values.
A few reasons to not quit:
- You have no backup plan.
- You can’t survive without your current income.
- You are feeling stagnate/haven’t seen any growth. (If this is the case we suggest having a conversation with your boss/employer/supervisor about how you are feeling.)
- You are angry. (You had a really bad day and you are fed up, but give yourself time and don’t react immediately.)
Now hopefully you’ve asked yourself, “Do I just need to have a conversation with my boss, or is it time for me to hang up my hat?” and you’ve gotten clear on your situation. If your time has come for you to leave your job, then continue reading to ensure you leave with your head held high and relationships still intact.
Step 1 – Give At Least a Two Weeks’ Notice
You are going to want to give your employer at least two weeks’ notice when deciding to quit. We suggest doing this in person, or over a video call if your job is remote-based. This is standard practice but if you signed an employment contract, you will want to read over that to make sure it doesn’t have any specific rules over the length of the notice. You will want to inform your employer as soon as you have made the decision to leave. When giving your notice, be respectful, calm, and clear. The employer may ask questions, so be prepared to answer those as well!
Step 2 – Have a Written Letter of Resignation Ready
Even though you have given your employer your two weeks’ notice in person (or over video call or phone call), you must provide them with a written letter of resignation. This does not have to be complex, but you need to state clearly that you are leaving your position, your reason for leaving, your last date of employment with them, and it never hurts to close by being thankful for the opportunity you have had with them.
Step 3 – Organize your Files/Projects
You don’t want your team to struggle after you leave, so this is the time to make sure all of your files and projects you are working on are easily accessible and organized. You can even leave a document with directions to files and ongoing projects.
Step 4 – Meet With HR or Supervisor
If the position you are leaving provided you with benefits like insurance and a 401(k) you are going to want to get clarification on the steps you need to take to tie up any loose ends. This will also be a time you can ask when your final paycheck will come and if you have any ex-employee benefits!
Step 5 – Ask For an Exit Interview
Most employers will already have this as a part of their exiting process, but if not, ask for one! These are a great opportunity for you to give feedback on the position that can help the employer when hiring your replacement. You don’t want this to be a time to air all your grievances, and want it to stay positive, but do offer constructive feedback that they can use. If the company doesn’t already have an exit interview in their process, use your best judgement when asking for one. In the case that you are leaving a negative or toxic work situation, an exit interview may not be necessary, but every other step above will be! If an exit interview seems appropriate, by all means, ask!
If you follow all the steps above, we believe you will be able to leave your position with a great reputation and all relationships in good standing!