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May 23, 2006


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I agree that it's important to do all of the above, but I also think if it's obvious that you were pushed out by someone who made your life miserable that you need to let someone know that before you leave. It's been my experience that the person who is making you miserable is probably also poisoning the well for others. My husband left a job and discovered he was the 6th person to leave because of a bad supervisor. After I left, the bad manager who made me miserable also made the editor of the paper miserable enough to leave. There are just some people who shouldn't be in management as they are awful with people, and HR departments need to know this. Just my opinion, of course.

DeAnn -- I wouldn't disagree with you. I think it all depends on the manner in which you present it. If you're calm, professional, and can site facts/examples, then by all means it's ok to be honest and let the company know why you're leaving. This said, you also need to consider whether or not you'll ever need help from the person (or his friends) you're talking about. It may come back to bite you in the end.

No matter what happens, though, it's never good to be vindictive, overly emotional, or attempting to get even. These attempts will be seen through and you'll burn bridges with both the person you report as well as the company itself.

Don't send boastful or sobbing farewell e-mails.

I need to forward this one to our whole company. It's such a drama production around here when someone leaves.

Great topic!

There's one thing I'd like to add about an official resignation letter: It's official and it's a hard copy. You spell out your exact intentions, when your last day will be, whether or not you'd like a copy of your personnel file, and a bit of gratitude for giving you the oportunity.

This kind of stuff can be lost in an email, or misunderstood in a phone conversation. In a day when it's easy to fire off an email, it's also a bit more personal and professional.

Another point: Take advantage of the exit interview, but offer up constructive criticism. Don't just tell your boss he sucks and then walk out. If you're quiting because of personality issues, you may not be the first, and unless you tell someone, you will not be the last.

In a time when switching jobs is quite easy and common, most companies are trying to create incentive to keep people around, and they truely hate to lose good people. If they're worth working for, they'll want to have an honest reason why you quit.

It also helps if your exit interview is conducted by someone other than your direct superior...


I partly disagree about the sending out sobbing emails. I don't think it is a bad idea as long as you tone it down and let people know that you just decide to move on and appreciate everything. Leave your contact info should anyone want to get in touch. That way if anyone wanted to get in touch maybe regarding another job opening somewhere else, they can get to you.

Weird. Maybe it's just the industry I'm in, but I've never been asked to stay longer than I offered to, and only once was I even taken up on my offer of two weeks. More typically, the response is "thanks for the offer, but if you're going to leave we'd like you to be out of the building within 15 minutes, and we'll be having someone watch while you pack up your personal effects". And I'm not talking just about companies that I left on bad terms. One job that I loved, which I still give as a reference, and which I only left because I was moving out of state, still did the same routine. Company policy.

And actually, the one company that _did_ take me up on the offer to stay two weeks, was also the one where I'd at one point been manager (and eventually sole survivor) of the satellite office, before they finally closed it completely and moved me to their new headquarters.

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