So Long And Thanks For All The Fish, or How Not To Resign
According to Douglas Adams there are dolphins somewhere in the universe acting all smug. With advance knowledge of the impending destruction of earth by the Vogons , they jump planet. But not before first building an exact replica of earth, including everything and everyone on it. Dolphins are clever aren’t they?
We can learn a lot about the way Douglas Adams’ dolphins left earth for pastures/oceans new. They didn’t just up and leave, without handing in their notice, they didn’t bad mouth their colleagues and they didn’t leave any work unfinished. They even left a note for us, which simply read “so long, and thanks for all the fish”.
You can decide to hand in your notice in one of two ways. The first is to do so with your head held up high and in a manner maintaining dignity, professionalism and respect. The other involves leaving the big gaping door of regret and recrimination wide open.
DO leave the way you’d want someone to leave your company
- Ensure you provide adequate notice, commensurate with your position in the company
- Help with training to cover your duties or a replacement
- List all important passwords and documents
- Provide effective contact information for clients
- Perform at your best, right up until you leave
- Inform all your clients of your leaving and thank them for their business
- Maintain a good dialogue with the boss
- Make a point of thanking your colleagues
- Ensure your timekeeping is excellent because final impressions certainly count!
DON’T leave yourself open to criticism and repercussion
- By announcing your relief at leaving on social media
- Failing to offer full notice
- Switching off from the job that is still paying your wages
- Bad mouthing the company to colleagues or anyone else
- Downloading company information that isn’t yours
- Suddenly being a poor timekeeper
- Using your exit interview to vent criticism
- Failing to hand over your work effectively.
How you leave a job and how your bosses and colleagues view your conduct and attitude is important. Remember, this is the last image they will have of you. You can either be a friendly, diligent colleague and employee, or you can be the one that slacked off and left them with problems they had to sort out for weeks afterwards.
If you are leaving the industry for good, then make sure people only have the best things to say about you. Having plenty of genuine LinkedIn testimonials can help enormously in your new role.
However desperate you are about leaving your present job, never give voice to your negativity. It will nearly always come across as moaning, small-minded and a kick in teeth to your work colleagues who are still working there. The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence, until you realise that it’s just another field.
Every old job was once a new job and how you leave reflects personally on you and your professionalism, which in turn reflects on your employ-ability.
When you hand in your notice, act like a dolphin, tie up the loose ends, write a letter and leave with both dignity and respect.