Everyone goes through it at some point in their life: quitting your job. When this time comes, there are some important things you need to remember in order to make the transition (and those tough conversations) as seamless as possible:
When you leave a job, your absence will impact the whole team –not just your manager. It is important to remain professional and respectful to everyone involved.
Regardless of what you think an employer expects, it’s customary to provide a 2-week notice (10 business days) to your employer. Aside from being respectful and professional, the proactive notice allows your employer to:
- Make arrangements to begin to create a job posting.
- Find time to build and test out an interim work plan so your responsibilities don’t go by the wayside.
You don’t want to blindside anyone by giving short notice. When you leave, your absence will impact the whole team –not just your manager. You know never who you might meet again in your career, and how you handle leaving a job will be the lasting impression someone has of you. It is always best to be courteous, so you don’t burn any bridges.
Let Your Manager Know First
The worst thing you can do when you decide to leave is to tell a work friend you’re leaving… who then tells their friend…who tells their friend…who tells their friend…who is your manager. Now everyone in the office knows that you are leaving before you have had the opportunity to tell your manager yourself!
When you do tell your manager, make sure you tell them face-to-face. This, again, goes back to being respectful, and professional.
Give a Written Notice
Aside from being professional, providing a written notice allows you to have documentation of your notice. Some HR departments require you to provide documentation stating when you put in your notice and when your last day is. This information is needed not only for HR, but it also protects you in case the terms in which you left a company are ever contested in the future. Bottom line: It’s a good idea to get into the habit of providing some kind of documented notice (this doesn’t have to be something overly formal like a resignation letter) when you decide to leave.
Tie Up Any Loose Ends
Whether someone has been trained to replace you or not, always do your best to leave your current employer in a good spot. You can do this by:
- Making sure the necessary information has been relayed to the person who will be taking over your duties.
- If you have trained your replacement, think about how you can help them in the future once you are gone. This could be something like making a training manual or daily checklist, etc.
After you turn in your notice, don’t coast! May seem obvious, right? But now isn’t the time to take sick days, come into work late or take extended breaks. Just because you put in your notice, doesn’t mean you’re still not an employee of the company. Regardless of whether it’s day 1 or day 1,001, your work ethic should not change. Remember, this is someone’s last impression of you, it’s up to you to make it a good one!
Even after you’ve given your notice and worked out your last day, it is important to NEVER speak negatively about the company, manager, or peers. If you need to, stay off social media with your thoughts about previous jobs. Again, you never know who you might cross paths with, in the future.
Leaving a job isn’t easy for anyone. Between working up the nerve to speak with your supervisor, and all the built relationships with your co-workers, giving your notice can be stressful, so it is important, you remain methodical. If you follow these simple tips, you can confidently step into your next role knowing you have left your previous employer and your colleagues with the tools they need to succeed.