Leaving a Job

Regardless of why you leave a job, it is important to do it a timely and professional manner. Telling your boss may be nerve wracking as it makes leaving feel more ‘real,’ but it is an essential step.

During your job search you may be asked what length of notice is needed from your current job. Always be truthful when answering this question as your potential new employers need a realistic timeline for their new hire. It may be tempting to lie so you can get the job but that will often lead to confusion, stress and problems with both your old and new jobs. If it is possible to start at the new job part time, you can mention that; it will show your enthusiasm for the new role even if it does not end up happening. If you are unsure of what length of notice you need to give, try looking in your initial contract or ask the HR manager at your company or anyone else you may feel comfortable telling about your job search.

Once you have received a job offer, confirm with your new employers the start date. If they did not ask about your old job in the interview be sure to bring up your timeline with them. Again, be honest about your schedule. If an employer wants you to quit your job and start with them right away it may be a red flag that there are other management issues with that company.

As soon as you can, tell your current boss that you are leaving. Give them your last day and ask them if there is anything in particular they would like you to do with the rest of your time (such as training someone or finishing an important project). They will most likely ask for your notice in writing. It does not have to be a long statement, just a few sentences.

“Dear (Name of Boss). Please accept this letter (or email) as a notification that my last day at (name of your business) will be (the date of your last day). Thank you.”

If you want to, you can use this notice to thank them for hiring your or telling them what the job meant to you but do not air your grievances or ask for references.

Once your boss has been notified you can feel free to tell your coworkers if you wish. Do not tell them first! Office rumour mills can run quicker than you think and your boss finding out your plans via a third party makes you look unprofessional and insensitive. Don’t use your last days at this job slacking off. Ensure the coworkers you are leaving behind are caught up on everything you were doing and have access to your work. Remember, they may be short handed after you leave so not working in your last days and leaving them unprepared will cause them great difficulty and put you in a negative light. If you wish, you can also leave them your contact information in case of questions they may have once you are gone.

Starting a new job is a great opportunity but can be stressful. If you have the option, take some time between your two jobs to rest and digest your experiences. Get ready to start fresh with a good night’s sleep and maybe some new clothes-and don’t forget to plan your new commute! Remember, you won’t be an expert at your new job over night and no one will expect you to be. Take your time and ask questions!

Career Seeker Coaching Advice, Development, Job Tips