Get that resignation right

[private]There’s some really good advice contained in this article from Michael Page Canada.

There are important things to add.

  • Before you accept another role, make sure you are certain it’s the right role. If you subsequently change your mind (and accept a counter-offer) you will alienate the potential new employer, any agency, potentially other candidates and also your current employer. Handled badly, changing your mind could destroy you in the market for years to come.
  • Before you resign, wait for the formal offer letter from the new job – the job offer is less likely to be withdrawn if it is in writing.
  • After you’ve resigned, stay positive and be positive – even if others around you are behaving badly (or encouraging you to behave badly).  Whatever you do, don’t burn bridges unless you absolutely have no choice.
  • Be prepared for a bad reaction – disappointment from your old employer can easily become anger. You might be told to clear your desk or go home until further notice. If this happens, don’t react.  Try to take the heat out of the situation.
  • If you have a customer facing role, agree what will be said to customers, accounts, contacts etc. Again, make this positive.
  • It’s really important that you resist the urge to “dish the dirt”; to try to take your contact list with you or take that important piece of market sensitive information. During your notice period you still have a duty of care to your employer – any breach of this could get you into hot water.
  • Remember that all your old contacts, customers and colleagues will form part of your network going forward. They could be asked to provide informal references on you; they might even be your manager in the future. Ensure you can stay in touch with them. LinkedIn is great for this, but ensure you change your LinkedIn email setting before you resign. If you lose email access immediately upon resignation you will not be able to access the account and will lose all those contacts you had. It’s generally good advice to add a second email address to your LinkedIn profile.
  • Remember the people you leave behind. Don’t gloat, avoid seeming smug or self-satisfied and don’t boast about how well you are doing. Let others know how well they’ve done, how they’ve helped and supported you, how valuable they’ve been. Share the success.
  • Leaving a role is an important milestone in a career. Make a note of all you learnt, all you achieved and the positives so that your internal dialogue about the role is upbeat.
  • Finally, prepare for the new job. Get the right mind set, make a note of all you want to achieve and remember to smile and listen on day one. Start how you mean to go on; positive, achieving, caring, productive, valued.

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