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Tips for leaving your job the right way

Rich Hein | Nov. 27, 2012
Who hasn't wanted to throw up their hands and just walk out of the office? Don't do it. Learn the proper etiquette for leaving your job and ensure that your career and reputation remain intact after you leave your current position.

The bottom-line--ask for recommendations and guide your referring colleagues.

Keep Things Positive and Low Key

Making a scene or bashing the company may work great in the movies, but in real-life these things are remembered and can come back to haunt you. It's often best to avoid the conversation altogether, but if you must then keep things on a positive note. "Use common sense and decency when exiting a company. Even if it's a bad situation, try to take the high road," says Seidel.

We've all heard the stories about people posting stupid things on Facebook or Twitter. If you work in IT and you don't think your next employer will peek at your social media profiles, then you're making a mistake. Announcing your new position is fine, but belittling your old boss or berating your former company will surely come back to bite you. Success is always the best revenge, and burning bridges is never a good idea, regardless of the situation.

Be Cautious of Exit Interviews

Exit interviews can be a tricky maneuver. While they are meant to be confidential, they are often shared. Be as diplomatic as you can. "No matter what you are told, assume that your feedback will get back to people. It is often a tough and personal decision as to whether you should use an exit interview to call out behavior in an organization you consider to be wrong or abusive. One question to consider in making such a decision--do I think the issues I experienced were an anomaly or part of the culture?" says Seidel.

Often times it's best to just say you're leaving because you've been offered an opportunity that you simply couldn't pass up. Bad-mouthing bosses or company policies can lead to missed opportunities down the road. "You need to be careful not to come across as negative. Even if the company was terrible, your boss was a jerk and all the projects you were a part of failed miserably, you still want to portray yourself as someone that learned a lot from those challenges," says Van Vreede. Stay positive and upbeat.

This is also the time when you can ask questions regarding health care benefits, 401K transfers and any other questions that come up. If you're not sure whether you're company does exit interviews, then schedule a meeting with you HR people to discuss these matters after you've delivered the news.

Maintain Your Reputation and Career

Leaving your job with poise and etiquette can open up opportunities for you in the future. If you remove emotion from the equation, are objective and honest with yourself, then you are on the path to a successful transition.

 

 

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