It’s almost the end of the year and as you reflect on the new year’s resolutions that you made almost a year ago, you may realize that you are still working the same tired job, that is either not paying you enough or challenging you enough. Either way, you are aware that where you are at professionally in life isn’t where you should be or deserve to be, so it is time to move around to something bigger and better.
Now that you know that you want to leave your current company, you start applying everywhere, and are being blessed with interviews and offers. However, before you say ‘yes’ to the new job, there are some things that you should and should not do before you quit your job:
Do Take Advantage of Your Current Health and Dental Insurance
When I left my previous job, I was so anxious to get the hell up out of there that I didn’t bother to think about the doctor and dentist appointments that I needed to make. When I started my next job, I wasn’t able to accrue days off until over a month. For some companies, it takes even longer than a month to accrue paid days off, so before you chunk the deuces to your current company, get your last appointments in while you are still covered by their plans.
Don’t Let That Vacay Time Go To Waste
Often we work our behinds off and don’t take any days off until the holidays or when we are forced to take days off because of emergencies. Throughout the year, you should be taking days off for “me” time or to just friggin’ get away and explore the world. Traveling and seeing the world is key. Similar to the point above, when you start at your new company, you probably won’t have time off accrued in the beginning or you may not want to spend the first month or two asking to be off since you will be the newbie. As a result, use your current, allotted vacation days, to do things you want to do.
Do Provide A Full Two Weeks Notice
As a manager, I’ve had employees give five-day notices and then some give two-day notices. The funny thing about both is that one of those employees actually reapplied for their old job just months after quitting! No matter how small you think your role may be, or how bad you want that new job, it is common courtesy to give a proper, full, two week’s notice. You never know when you may need your company again, and quite frankly, it is just tacky to not give proper notice.
Do Get All of Your Personal Items Off of Your Work Laptop/Electronics
Depending on your company and job role, you may be given a company laptop. When you have this laptop, it becomes easy to adopt it as your own. You have to remember that the device is not yours, and once you leave, you have to hand it back over (bye, bye Macbook).
Don’t Leave a Finger-Pointing Resignation Letter
As much as you want to say what’s really on your mind and why you are leaving, stay out of your feelings, and keep your resignation letter short, sweet, and to the point. As previously mentioned, you never know when you may need your company, your old boss, or old team again, so leaving a gut-wrenching resignation letter won’t make life easier for you in the end.
Do Change Your Passwords and Auto-Forward Emails
If you have an office phone, before you leave, change your voicemail password to a generic one so that your boss can continue to check your voicemails after you leave. Also, touch base with your IT department and have them auto-forward any emails that are sent to you after your last day of work to your supervisor. Remember, one person doesn’t stop the work flow, and by making your password and work emails accessible, you are making the company’s job easier and leaving on a good note.
Do Organize Your Space
Before you leave, finish all big projects, and leave detailed notes on what you are working on and where things are located. Take your boss into your office and show him or her where you keep things and the status on your work so that they know how to pick up the pieces after you are gone. On the same note, continue to hold yourself accountable to your duties and do not let any work slack off.
Do Read the Employee Handbook (Again)
Depending on the company and its policies, you may be entitled to paid, unused time off. Read your employee handbook and ask HR any questions that you may have so that you are educated on what you should get or may get after leaving.
Don’t Feel Guilty About Leaving
I believe that it doesn’t matter what industry you work in or how big or small your job title is, it is never a convenient time to leave a job. Nonetheless, sometimes you have to do what’s best for you and end that work relationship. I totally believe that as long as you give proper notice (two weeks’ minimum), than you have fulfilled your duty as a good employee and are leaving on a good note.
What do you think are so do’s and don’t’s of quitting a job? Share your thoughts and experiences below!