The Do’s and Dont’s of Handing in your Notice

So you are changing jobs, moving on and you need to do the dreaded deed of handing in your notice? Here are a few do’s and don’ts to help guide you through the process.

  1. Relax – This is a good thing (for you) so don’t build yourself up into a tizzy. This is part of business/career decisions and no matter how nice your employer is, it helps to remember that he/she is still your employer, not your friend. You go to work to get paid, and they pay you to work – simple as that. They make business decisions everyday to do what’s best for the business, you are making a “business” decision doing what’s best for you.
  2. Don’t be flippant – Regardless of your relationship with your current employer, good or bad, don’t throw it in their face. You have ultimately made the decision to move but do thank them for the opportunity to work there and while you feel this is the right thing for you, do empathise with the fact that this creates a problem/void for their organisation and that they are losing your expertise and knowledge.
  3. Do not accept a counter offer – You are leaving for a reason. Something is not right, be it money, conditions, lack of progression or simply you are looking for a change. Some employers are reactive firefighters and will promise whatever you want to keep you and avoid the pain. If you have to hand in your notice to get these things changed then you should not be working there in the first place.
  4. Give as much notice as possible – There is a statutory notice period, there is a contractual notice period and then there is a reasonable notice period. Every situation, company and job is different, so judge it on its merits. Be fair, obliging, but also remember you have a new master now so he/she must be kept happy also. However, be clear, when you are gone you are gone. The odd phone call to help out is no issue, but still taking calls a month later is too much.

In general, the above points are to ensure you don’t burn any bridges as you never know when you will need them again, but also, it’s nice to be nice. On the flip side, you need to look after yourself, so unreasonable expectations or requests should not be tolerated.

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