Working at a technology recruiting company, many people contact us looking for new job opportunities and sometimes they ask for advice on the best way to leave a job. While you may be tempted to cut ties and run, it’s always best to leave a job with class. Here’s a step-by-step guide to resigning from your job with tact.

Step One: Be Ready to Explain Why You Are Leaving

Have your reasons for why you are leaving prepared. Keep your tone positive. Don’t knock the people or the company you worked for. Rather than saying you found a better job or better pay somewhere else, keep the tone postitive by saying you are looking to advance your career, or that you’ve been offered an opportunity you simply couldn’t pass up.

Step Two: Keep the Resignation Letter Professional

You will likely be requested to write an official letter of resignation. This is not the place to write a long sappy letter about how much you love the company and will miss it. Keep it short, simple and professional. Write it up in a Word document, and provide your employee with an email and paper copy.

How to Quit a Job with Class

Step Three: Dealing with Counter Offers

What happens if your current employers aren’t so happy that you are leaving and try to convince you to stay by offering you more money, or other incentives to stay?

Whatever you decide, try not to make a decision on the spot. Tell them you’ll consider it, but wait until you are out of the office to mull it over without pressure.

If you are already signed up to start at another job, and are truly not interested in staying, tell your current employer the truth and politely decline. Ensure your current employer knows that you’ve given it a lot of thought, and really believe that this is the best decision for you.

Step Two: Get a Reference or Recommendation Before You Leave

Be sure to ask for references from managers or supervisors that you worked closely with and who knew you well. If they use LinkedIn, be sure to request a written recommendation on LinkedIn as well.

Step Four: Wrap Up Loose Ends

Typically, most offices require two weeks notice if you resign from a job. Use this time to complete any outstanding projects before you leave. If this is impossible, try to make the company’s transition to coping without you as easy as possible. Make a detailed list of what needs to get done, deadlines, etc. Offer to train your replacement or someone who can step in for you until a replacement is found.

Step Five: Leave on a Positive Note

Inform everyone you work with closely that you are leaving. You can let your team know in a group email (this is your opportunity to get more sappy), or if you prefer, let everyone know one-on-one, but make sure to keep everyone in the loop since your leaving might affect them as well. Provide your phone number and email for anyone who would like to keep in touch, and make sure everyone knows who to speak to about any questions that might arise when you are gone.

The most important thing to remember is to leave on a positive note, since you never know who you might run into down the line in your career.

Oh, and last but not least, don’t forget to enjoy the goodbye cake!


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