7 Things to NOT Include in Your Resignation Letter

7 Things to NOT Include in Your Resignation Letter

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1. Don't Include Any Negativity

We’re going to go into specifics, but let’s make a blanket statement here: there is no place for negativity in your resignation letter. Look at this particular letter as a formal handling of your dissolution of employment. Do include details like whether you intend to give two weeks’ notice if you’re willing to stick around to train your 

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1. Don't Include Any Negativity

replacement or whether you’ll be leaving effective immediately. Don’t go into why you hate your job, how you’re so happy you’re leaving, and how you hope they have a terrible fiscal year without you.

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2. Don't Include Reasons You Hated Your Job

You might think you’re helping out the next person by chronicling the various offenses committed against you in your resignation letter. You might view your resignation letter as the place to right some wrongs and improve your position for your successor. If you have real grievances that cannot be ignored, you can get serious about it. Seek out an 

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2. Don't Include Reasons You Hated Your Job

exit interview with Human Resources or your manager and voice your concerns. If your manager is the source of your concerns, consider asking for another senior-level employee to conduct or preside over your exit interview.

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3. Don't List Reasons You Hated Your Boss or Coworkers

Just like using your resignation letter to list out reasons you hated your job, it’s also not the place to launch attacks on individuals. And who knows?  You might end up needing a reference from these very people in the future. Quit your job with grace towards your former boss and coworkers—just in case. 

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3. Don't List Reasons You Hated Your Boss or Coworkers

Our advice does remain the same, though. If a coworker, manager, or senior executive is engaging in unprofessional or abusive behavior, tackle that with Human Resources at your exit interview or consider reaching out to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC.)

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4. Don't Reveal Secrets or Details About Other Coworkers

So, we know that Joanne from accounting is your worst enemy—and we know you think she might mess with the numbers sometimes. We know that Bob from Corporate got really drunk at the holiday party—and you're pretty sure he was the one who poured the champagne in the copier. Your resignation letter is not the place to call out every 

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4. Don't Reveal Secrets or Details About Other Coworkers

wrongdoing or misdeed of your soon-to-be-former coworkers.

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5. Don't Share Detailed Information About Your New Job

Your new job is awesome and you’re so proud you got it. You may have great benefits, a better salary, and a bright future. Your soon-to-be-ex employer doesn’t need to be privy to any of these details. Don’t use your letter of resignation as a place to make your old job jealous. First of all, it won’t work. Second of all, you might get yourself into some 

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5. Don't Share Detailed Information About Your New Job

hairy situations by disclosing the terms of your new agreement. Not to be too paranoid, but if you’re leaving a super toxic environment, you never know what former management could do to mess your new opportunity up for you. Keep quiet about your next opportunity for this one reason: it’s nobody’s business but yours. That being said, congratulations!

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6. Don't Add Any Inappropriate or Threatening Language

This means none of those four-letter words, no name-calling, and no declarations that the company will “rue the day” they let you go. This letter is likely to go into an employment file that could follow you through a career. Michelle Obama was right about always going high, so take her word for it. Also, we have all seen emails 

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6. Don't Add Any Inappropriate or Threatening Language

go viral. Don’t go viral. You also don't want to spend your two-week transition period knowing that you called your boss a few choice words. Allow yourself a smooth transition by keeping to yourself.

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7. Finally, Don't Insert That Final “Eff You”

You know that scene from Half Baked where Scarface quits his job? Or, in real-life, remember the JetBlue employee who quit by deploying the emergency exit slide? While many of us fantasize about going out like that, it does you a disservice. Instead of having that final “eff you” moment, here’s a word of advice from your mom here at Career Contessa. Leave with 

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7. Finally, Don't Insert That Final “Eff You”

all of your dignity intact. Make it so that no person could have a negative thing to say about you. Throughout your entire resignation process, be professional. Hey, you never know if you might like a recommendation in the future.

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