I’d like to help you in your struggle
To be free
There must be fifty ways
To leave your lover – Paul Simon
We’ve all been there — or will be. You feel like you’ve come to the end of your time, or that you’ve accomplished what you can and need new challenges. Maybe you have an overbearing boss or checked-out underlings. Whatever the reason, you feel (often quite strongly) that you need to move on.
How do you do it? Well, there are many ways. Allow me to outline a few. What?! Not fifty like the title claims? Hey, if Paul Simon could do it, so can I.
- Just slip out the back, Jack. No matter how ticked off you may be at how you were treated at your present place of employment, don’t go burning any bridges. It might give you a moment’s pleasure to tell off your boss before hitting the pavement, but resist the urge. Behavior like that can come back to bite you in the future. My best advice: Leave on good terms.
- Make a new plan, Stan. The best leave-takings are those that are planned — often well in advance. Most organizations require a two-week notice before quitting, but if you can provide more, do so. Your former administration will greatly appreciate having extra time to plan for backfilling your departure. So, to recap: give plenty of notice.
- You don’t need to be coy, Roy. Assuming you have worked in your present position for at least a year — often more likely at least several years — you will have probably formed some opinions about what could be fixed or done better. Request an exit interview if one has not already been scheduled, in which you can pass on some constructive suggestions for ways the organization could improve. In sum: don’t take your best advice with you.
- Hop on the bus, Gus. Sure, but before hopping on the bus, make sure those who helped you through your time there know how much you have appreciated their help and camaraderie. Even if your job was tainted by bad situations you are escaping, there are likely at least a few individuals who deserve your personal thanks. Hunt them down and make sure they get it. Bottom line: Be a mensch.
- Just drop off the key, Lee. If you’ve worked a long time with the same organization you may have formed the opinion that anything in or around your desk or office is yours. Well, unless it is a personal item you brought to work to brighten your cube — it isn’t. Remember: don’t take anything that isn’t yours.