Money & Career

How to resign

By: Dee Van Dyk

Author: Canadian Living

Money & Career

How to resign

By: Dee Van Dyk
It happens every day in offices across the country. An employee becomes agitated and quits on the spot, a string of angry words marking the departure. Unfortunately, that brief moment of venting may cost her dearly in the long term.

"It's important not to burn your bridges behind you," says Candace Davies, certified professional resume writer and president of Cando Career Coaching and Resume Writing. "The boss you leave today may provide the reference for the job you want tomorrow."


Consider your options
Never make a decision in haste. Consider carefully whether you really want to tender your resignation. Are you confident that you'll be able to find other work? If you can't find other work immediately, how strongly will that affect your life?

Once you've made the decision to leave, leave the job with as much grace and professionalism as possible. Give adequate notice, generally a minimum of two weeks, to allow your employer time to begin looking for your replacement.

Write a letter
Your resignation letter will become a part of your employee file, so take care to prepare it in a professional manner. Type it out in a traditional business letter format, including your name, address, the date, and your employer's name and address.

What should the body of your letter include? Keep it simple and courteous. This is not the time or the place to air your grievances against the company or your co-workers. State your intention to resign simply and politely, including the effective date of your resignation.

You may wish to focus briefly on the positive points of your employment and the aspects of your job that you particularly liked: the contact with co-workers, working with the public, the opportunity for growth, etc. It's important to leave a positive and professional image of yourself.

Deliver your resignation letter in person. Your boss may want to talk about the reasons behind your resignation; use this time to thank your employer for the opportunities presented by the job.

Remain professional
Once you've handed in your resignation letter, maintain your professional attitude until the end. Remember everything you do in your final days with the company may affect your references and reputation.

Offer to train your replacement. Refusing to do so will create unnecessary hard feelings and difficulties for your replacement, who is unlikely to be the source of your dissatisfaction.

And finally, return any company property that you may have before leaving.

"If you have information – passwords, combinations to access files of certain contacts – give it to your manager," recommends Davies.

As with so much in life, the key to a successful and smooth resignation lies in a positive and professional attitude.

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Money & Career

How to resign