So you’ve found yourself at a crossroads. You need to quit your job, but you don’t know how to do it properly.
It’s important to remember that you’re not the first person who has left the company, and you certainly won’t be the last.
There is a proper way to leave, though. Before you text your boss “I quit,” you should read these tips on how to quit your job like a professional. Always resign with grace and maintain your professional relationships moving forward.
Don’t Tell Anyone Before Your Manager
Even if you are great friends with some of your colleagues, you still shouldn’t let them in on your plans before you tell your manager. They could mention it to someone else in passing, or another person could overhear. This could produce office gossip that might make its way to your manager before you get a chance to set up a meeting.
Discovering your decision this way could make for a pretty awkward confrontation. On top of that, it might damage your reputation and hurt your chances to get references and recommendations in the future.
Quit in Person
It may seem easier to write an email or leave a resignation letter on your boss’s desk, but I promise that you will regret this later. Especially if your boss or manager has invested a lot of time and effort into your growth, this move could make you seem ungrateful, unprofessional, or, frankly, cowardly.
Quitting in person is the most respectful and professional way to leave your job.
Give Two Weeks’ Notice
Even if you have no desire to be there anymore, you should still give your employer enough notice to fill your position. They need time to interview candidates to find the best fit. Without proper notice, you could be leaving them scrambling to find a replacement, and they will definitely think less of you professionally.
Two weeks is actually the minimum amount of time, so if possible, give your employer a three- or four-week notice before officially leaving. Your company might have a policy about resigning, or you take note of how much notice other employees gave before leaving.
Write a Formal Resignation Letter
Sending your resignation to both your manager and human resources is a great way to clarify that you’re leaving. It puts the date of your last day in writing and also shows that you gave your employer ample amount of notice before leaving. It’s also great proof that you ended your time at the company, not the other way around.
When you write your letter, don’t get into the reasons why you’re leaving, and definitely don’t criticize or be negative. Just keep it simple and short. You should only include the fact that you’re resigning, when your last day will be, and don’t forget to date your letter. It’s also considered courteous to throw in a line thanking for the opportunity to have worked at their company.
Don’t Be Negative
Even if you hated your job and hope to never set foot in the building ever again, you should never bash your manager, your team, or the company. Emotional bursts of criticism can make you look less professional, especially if you’re bashing your past job when talking to a potential future employer. Being negative could wind up hurting your career in the end.