Quitting your job without the guilt

Quitting your job without the guilt
Article contributed by Paul Wheeler
Written on 12 March 2015

So you've finally made the decision and rejected the counteroffer. You're sticking to your guns, thinking about what's right for you and starting to get excited about the new role. Now all you have to do is say those two famous words: "I Quit!"

Quitting a job is a stressful process. You've created great relationships with colleagues and found your comfort zone so the thought of leaving is alien. Although it’s a personal experience, I do think the future employer has an important part to play.

For example, my colleagues have joined us from countries all over the world. Not only are they starting a new job, but also having to deal with moving to London — now that’s as stressful as it gets! This is when I (as the new employer) need to offer support and ensure company culture is on point. Welcoming new staff with open arms will always improve business morale and productivity.

The bookends — how you start and how you end — are the most important parts of any professional relationship so before you start the process, there are a few do’s and don’ts to consider:

DO go straight to the boss

There’s nothing worse than being the last to know, especially in this situation. When you've decided to quit, make sure you go straight to the boss. It’ll look very unprofessional any other way and together, you can decide how to announce your resignation to the rest of the team. Always remember that whatever you have learnt from your current employer has enabled you to move on so be graceful and above all, thankful for everything they have done for you.

DON’T Gossip

This is not a time for gossiping. Stick with one story and steer away from office politics. Chances are if you tell your boss one thing and tell a colleague another, there will be controversy. Employers are likely to be very inquisitive but the more you debate, the more controversial your situation becomes and before you know it you're an emotional wreck!. You don’t need to deal with this — it will only make the process 10 times harder!

DO give notice

It’s really easy to keep putting it off but by giving your employer as much notice as possible, they are more likely to take it better. Make it official by handing in your letter of resignation — you don’t have to beat around the bush, just be sure to express your thanks and confirm your last working day.

DON’T check out too soon

If you're counting down the minutes until you can leave, remember not to mentally "check out" too soon. Until your last day, you still work there and need to make a good last impression. Remember your references are at stake here; you can’t give your boss any reason to leave bad feedback.

DO tie up loose ends

When you leave a job, more often than not you’re also leaving a bank of clients. You should always dedicate time to tying up loose ends — make sure any work you have started is completed and everything is set in place ready for your successor.

DON'T feel guilty

It's normal to feel guilty when you're leaving a job, especially when it's a sad departure. I am always telling people to stop turning it into a crime, if you have handed your notice in with respect what do you have to feel guilty about? You shouldn't be made to feel bad because you've done nothing wrong! My 30 years experience tells me this concept of guilt is the most reoccurring factor of the quitting process when in reality, a refresh is probably the best cure for you both. As employers, we should always view past employees as potential brand ambassadors and try and make their transition as easy as possible. You don't want anything coming back to bite you.

Finally, keep in mind that when one door closes, another door opens and although it is a very long and difficult process, it will all be worth it in the end. All that’s left is to prepare for your first day in the new role. So, how are you going to ace it?

Walker Andersen - It's all about time