If you are thinking about how to resign from your job, there are right and very wrong ways of doing it. If you do it the right way you can keep essential bridges intact and leave on a high note. However if you do it the wrong way you can knock down these bridges and this may prove to be harmful for you in the future, if for example you need to get a reference from your previous employer.
When it comes to resigning there is a professional etiquette to follow (no matter how aggrieved you may be with your employer). Remember, you will probably need your employer to supply a reference for a new position so it’s important to keep them on your side.
Should I Stay or Should I Go?
The first question to ask yourself is whether you are really committed to leaving. Many people have bad days and think about leaving, but this feeling often passes. Have you found another job? Are you actively seeking new employment? Do you want to take a break for a while? Make sure you are absolutely sure before you hand in your notice as more often than not you will not be able to go back on your decision.
Do the Right Thing
Whether you are going to be personally telling your employer that you are going to be resigning or using a formal letter, you need to choose your words carefully. Speak about the positives of your employment and how you have enjoyed working at the company (even if you have not). Try not to dwell on any negative aspects and think about what you have learnt and the skills that you have gained from your employment instead. Many companies operate an exit interview process. It is here where you may want to air any problems that you might have had during your employment, but be sure to do so in a constructive and professional manner.
All That Glitters Is Not Always Gold
If your employer doesn’t want to lose you, they may give you a counter offer. This could involve a higher salary, a promotion, a company car or many other incentives to get you to stay. Never lose sight of the reasons why you wanted to leave in the first place. If you hate your job or have found the job of your dreams elsewhere, weigh up the pros and cons for staying or leaving. Don’t be blinded by money or other attractive offers – you should follow your heart but always think logically before making your final decision.
Always Leave on the Right Note
Always ensure that you give your employer enough notice of your intention to leave the company. If you are not sure of this period, your HR department will be able to advise you. Try to complete any outstanding tasks so that you don’t leave your employer in the lurch. In the case of large projects this is often not possible, but you should do as much as you can to alleviate the pressure from your current employer before you resign.