The No-Fail Way to Give Notice (Without Everything Imploding)

The No-Fail Way to Give Notice (Without Everything Imploding)

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1. Give Your Notice

Once your job offer is official, your new company will understand that you need to tell your former employer that you're leaving. Two weeks is the minimum amount of notice you should give, but more time is also an option. The more technical and finite your skill set is, the more notice you'll want to give them (so they can find your 

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1. Give Your Notice

replacement). Feel out what’s right. Once you receive the go-ahead from your new opportunity, let your current company know. The worst thing you can do is leave your current company high and dry. By giving advanced notice, they can start the hiring process on their schedule, and you won't burn any bridges.

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1. Give Your Notice

If you're unsure about how much notice is enough notice, consult your company handbook for any guidance or legal obligations you might have.  Schedule a meeting with your immediate supervisor and let them know that while you have enjoyed your time there, you're ready to explore new opportunities. 

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1. Give Your Notice

Always communicate your news face-to-face and plan what you’d like to say in advance so the meeting goes smoothly. After your face-to-face, keep it professional by penning a letter of resignation that summarizes your meeting. We created a resignation letter template for you to work from since it can be a tough letter to write.

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1. Give Your Notice

We also have a two weeks' notice letter template if you want to get very specific.

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2. Approach with Grace + Gratitude

During your meeting with your boss, be as gracious and polite as possible. Start the conversation by thanking them for allowing you to work there and highlighting some positive moments or projects during your tenure. Now is not the time to air all your grievances. Your boss might be shocked to hear you’re leaving, and she doesn’t want 

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2. Approach with Grace + Gratitude

or need to hear all the negatives. By sharing your news in a positive way, you will leave a lasting impression that will certainly give you another reference to call down the line. If you’re leaving due to extenuating circumstances—say, your husband’s company transferred him out of state or you’ve decided to go back to 

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2. Approach with Grace + Gratitude

school—then feel free to share. There may be opportunities for you to work remotely or to come back once you’ve received your coveted M.B.A. Otherwise, don’t feel pressured to share your exact reasons for leaving, especially if they involve your boss.

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3. Keep Your Coworkers in the Loop (With Discretion)

We spend the majority of our time working, so we get to know our coworkers well. Some even become friends beyond the cubicle—or Zoom—walls.  After you’ve talked to your manager and any other higher-ups that need to know, start telling the people you work with. They’ll appreciate it coming directly from you and 

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3. Keep Your Coworkers in the Loop (With Discretion)

not via break room rumors. It's important to note that you aren't obliged to offer more details than your resignation—unless you want to share. In your formal resignation letter, your conversation with your direct supervisor, and in your conversations with your coworkers, they only need to know that you're leaving and when your last day of work will occur.

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4. Offer Constructive Feedback

You will most likely have an exit interview with HR in your final days. This is your chance to share your feedback on your position, company culture, and working conditions.  Of course, as with your manager, only offer constructive feedback. But if you’ve had some unhappy experiences, don’t be afraid to outline them (as objectively

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4. Offer Constructive Feedback

as possible, please). Companies can gain a lot of information from exit interviews, and if you have ideas for how to improve something, feel free to share them.  If you’ve always thought it would be nice to have food delivered for lunch once a week because everyone works through lunch, say so! If you 

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4. Offer Constructive Feedback

wished there were times you could work from home but were told it was against the policy, mention this. Answer all the questions thoroughly and honestly, and don’t throw anyone under the bus. HR will be the last group you talk to, so make sure to end on a positive note.

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5. Write Thank-You Notes

Everyone will remember a handwritten note because they're so few and far between. For the people you really like, those who mentored you or you worked with closely, write a thank you note on some nice stationery.  Include what you like about that person, a specific situation that left a lasting impression, and your personal contact 

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5. Write Thank-You Notes

information so you can stay in touch in the future. Either leave it on their desk or mail it to them after you leave. They won't forget it. You never know what will happen in the future. You might be interviewing for another job in a few years and find your old coworker is the hiring manager. Or you may realize this great opportunity isn’t so great 

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5. Write Thank-You Notes

after all. No matter what happens, leaving on a positive note is the best thing you can do.

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