Career Advice

How to Quit Your Job

A Guide to Quitting Your Current Job With Class

Quitting a job—as exciting as it is—can also be quite stressful. Your head is swirling with questions: Will my employer be angry? Will I burn bridges? Will I get everything done?

But with this step-by-step guide, saying sayonara to your present position will be easy-peasy—we promise. We’ll take you through all the essential steps of how to leave your employer with professionalism and a good impression, and move on to your dream job.


Guide Overview
  1. When to Quit
  2. How to Share the News
  3. How to Write a Resignation Letter
  4. Plan Your Final Days
  5. Learn More!

When to Quit

When you’re unhappy in your current position, it can be very tempting to put in two-weeks’ notice before you have a new job. Of course, conventional wisdom says that it’s much better to wait to quit a job until after you’ve safely secured another one. However, there are some exceptions to this rule. To determine if you can afford—literally—to quit your job before finding a new one, here are some questions you should ask yourself:

  • Depending on your industry or field, it can be difficult to find a new job fast. Do you have the financial resources to keep yourself going for three months? Six months?
  • Many hiring managers—though not all—don’t like to see a significant gap between jobs. If anything, they’re going to want to know: what happened with your last job? Can you tell the story without it appearing as a negative part of your career history?
  • Being unemployed for a long stretch of time can be hard on people psychologically, which makes them more likely to underperform in an interview. Would that be you?

Think the answers to these questions over. Depending on your chosen field, prematurely quitting your job could carry too much risk. Alternately, quitting your job to improve your mental or physical health can help you turn over a new leaf and can lead to new growth.

You have to make the decision that’s right for you. Decisions made under stress or pressure don’t usually have the best outcomes, so it pays to step back and think about your options.

When to Quit

How to Share the News

Now that you’ve determined it’s time to quit, you must schedule a meeting with your boss to share the news. Determine a time of day that best fits into your boss’ schedule. Mention that you want to schedule a one-on-one meeting at his or her earliest convenience.

Before the meeting, have a plan for all the small details so you—and the company—can move forward. Prepare your explanation to clearly articulate why you’re leaving. If you are leaving because you found a role that best fits your skill set and allows you to grow as the best version of yourself,  be sure to share that feedback with your employer.

And no matter what the circumstances are of your exit from the company, thank your boss for the years of collaboration, hard work, and achievements. Whether in an email or a mini-sendoff meeting, be appreciative as you exit. This will ensure you don’t burn any bridges.

How to Write a Resignation Letter

After you’ve spoken with your employer, it’s time to make your departure official with a resignation letter to present. A resignation letter is brief, direct, and devoid of extraneous fluff. All you need are the details of your departure, peppered with a sense of gratitude and appreciation for the experiences you’ve had on the job. Here’s a template you can tweak:

Dear [BOSS’ NAME]

This letter serves as formal notice of my resignation from my position as [JOB TITLE], effective [DATE].

The past [NUMBER] years working at [COMPANY] have been some of the most rewarding experiences to date. I’d like to particularly thank you for your time, support, and encouragement of my professional growth. It’s been a pleasure working on such a talented team, and to be able to have done so under your leadership.

I’m committed to making this transition period as smooth as possible. I’ll continue to work on my [SPECIFIC JOB RESPONSIBILITIES] until my resignation. Following my departure, [COLLEAGUE/REPLACEMENT] will be the new point of contact.

I look forward to staying in touch, and please feel free to add my personal email to your address book: [PERSONAL EMAIL]

Sincerely,

[YOUR NAME]

[YOUR CONTACT INFORMATION]

Send your resignation letter to your boss. If your company has an HR department, you should send it there as well. Submit a digital version via email, but also print your letter and submit a paper copy so they can keep it for their records. And don’t forget to keep a copy yourself, especially if you sent it from a work email address that will soon be defunct!

How to Write a Resignation Letter

Plan Your Final Days

It’s easy to fall into a bit of a lazy rut on your final week or so. However, you want to go out on a high note and leave a strong lasting impression with your colleagues and bosses. That means maintaining your level of productivity, staying engaged, and pushing yourself to set your team up for future success. After all, you want to be remembered for being a hardworking, dedicated professional who inspired others. Here are a few things to do.

Prepare a transition document. Before you leave, outline the projects you’ve been working on, key information, and important contacts to pass along to your team or the person assuming your duties. This will endear others to you and is the ultimate way you can transition out of a role smoothly, without burning bridges.

Send a transition email. Craft a message to important company clients to tell them about your departure and last date on the job. Make a list of who would want to keep working with your team going forward and be sure to connect the dots.

And ask for references. You want to build a network of positive references for your future. Building and maintaining professional relationships is the cornerstone to career success.

Learn More!

Now that you know how to quit your job, it’s time to start thinking about your next job—hopefully, your dream job! Here are some resources to help you succeed in your next steps.

How to Change Careers 

Got 60 Seconds? Here’s How to Score Your Dream Job

How to Get Your Dream Job Fast

8 Things to Do on Your First Day at a New Job

10 Things You Should Never Do When Starting A New Job

Career Advice

How to Quit Your Job

A Guide to Quitting Your Current Job With Class

So, you decided to quit your job for greener pastures. Despite the circumstances, whether it be a toxic environment or you simply found something better, the way you quit must be respectful and professional, since how you quit will affect the future of your career and your long-term goals.

Here’s how to quit your job in a respectful, professional manner:

Cross Your T’s and Dot Your I’s

Since you already determined your reasons for quitting you need to put all your ducks in a row. Finalize all the small details so you – and the company – can move forward. Prepare your explanation to clearly articulate why you’re leaving. If you are leaving because you found a role that best fits your skill set and allows you to grow as the best version of yourself, share that feedback with your employer – they deserve constructive input.

Ensure that you’ve fully debated your choice. Nothing’s worse than leaving a stable job for an opportunity that either falls through or doesn’t align with your personal and professional vision. In short, be certain that you’re making a move that’s best for you.

Find Your Timing

Determine a time of day that best fits into your immediate supervisor’s schedule. Mention that you want to schedule a one-on-one meeting at their earliest convenience. This way, you’re not bombarding them in the morning during a busy catch-up or shocking them on your way out the door.

You may find yourself in the middle of a big project when you take an opportunity at another company. When you announce your resignation, make it known that you plan to help train your successor. Present an action plan to leadership so they aren’t set up to fail.

Notify In Person

Respect the company’s business needs and give enough notice. Check your contract to see how you are obligated to resign. While the standard is often two weeks, you may have to provide more than that depending on your seniority and tenure.

You should also research who is the best person to be notified. If you have a good working relationship with your immediate supervisor, that is a great place to start. However, HR is another major player in this situation and might need to be informed formally.

When you write your letter of resignation, keep it concise and be consistent with what you write and what you tell people. Obviously, refrain from taking personal shots or being overly critical of specific people or the company. Your letter of resignation is not the place to air out issues you’ve had with co-workers or management, but note that you’d be willing to further discuss your perspective of the company in an outgoing interview. Simply put, if you don’t have anything nice to say about someone, don’t say anything at all. 

Plan Your Final Days

It’s easy to fall into a bit of a lazy rut on your final week or so. However, you want to go out on a high note and leave a strong lasting impression with your colleagues and bosses. That means maintaining your level of productivity, staying engaged, and pushing yourself to set your team up for future success. You want to be remembered for being a hardworking, dedicated professional who inspired others.

Make sure to express your gratitude to your team and stay connected after you leave. With so many online resources, it takes minimal effort to connect and stay engaged with people, whether that be an occasional email or a regular lunch meeting.

You want to build a network of positive references for your future — an asset that is beyond value. Building and maintaining meaningful professional relationships is the cornerstone to career success.

By following these steps, you can end your job on a high note, and on good terms with colleagues. You never know when you might meet them again! 

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Guide Overview
  1. When to Quit
  2. How to Share the News
  3. How to Write a Resignation Letter
  4. Plan Your Final Days
  5. Learn More!

When to Quit

When you’re unhappy in your current position, it can be very tempting to put in two-weeks’ notice before you have a new job. Of course, conventional wisdom says that it’s much better to wait to quit a job until after you’ve safely secured another one. However, there are some exceptions to this rule. To determine if you can afford—literally—to quit your job before finding a new one, here are some questions you should ask yourself:

  • Depending on your industry or field, it can be difficult to find a new job fast. Do you have the financial resources to keep yourself going for three months? Six months?
  • Many hiring managers—though not all—don’t like to see a significant gap between jobs. If anything, they’re going to want to know: what happened with your last job? Can you tell the story without it appearing as a negative part of your career history?
  • Being unemployed for a long stretch of time can be hard on people psychologically, which makes them more likely to underperform in an interview. Would that be you?

Think the answers to these questions over. Depending on your chosen field, prematurely quitting your job could carry too much risk. Alternately, quitting your job to improve your mental or physical health can help you turn over a new leaf and can lead to new growth.

You have to make the decision that’s right for you. Decisions made under stress or pressure don’t usually have the best outcomes, so it pays to step back and think about your options.

When to Quit

How to Share the News

Now that you’ve determined it’s time to quit, you must schedule a meeting with your boss to share the news. Determine a time of day that best fits into your boss’ schedule. Mention that you want to schedule a one-on-one meeting at his or her earliest convenience.

Before the meeting, have a plan for all the small details so you—and the company—can move forward. Prepare your explanation to clearly articulate why you’re leaving. If you are leaving because you found a role that best fits your skill set and allows you to grow as the best version of yourself,  be sure to share that feedback with your employer.

And no matter what the circumstances are of your exit from the company, thank your boss for the years of collaboration, hard work, and achievements. Whether in an email or a mini-sendoff meeting, be appreciative as you exit. This will ensure you don’t burn any bridges.

How to Write a Resignation Letter

After you’ve spoken with your employer, it’s time to make your departure official with a resignation letter to present. A resignation letter is brief, direct, and devoid of extraneous fluff. All you need are the details of your departure, peppered with a sense of gratitude and appreciation for the experiences you’ve had on the job. Here’s a template you can tweak:

Dear [BOSS’ NAME]

This letter serves as formal notice of my resignation from my position as [JOB TITLE], effective [DATE].

The past [NUMBER] years working at [COMPANY] have been some of the most rewarding experiences to date. I’d like to particularly thank you for your time, support, and encouragement of my professional growth. It’s been a pleasure working on such a talented team, and to be able to have done so under your leadership.

I’m committed to making this transition period as smooth as possible. I’ll continue to work on my [SPECIFIC JOB RESPONSIBILITIES] until my resignation. Following my departure, [COLLEAGUE/REPLACEMENT] will be the new point of contact.

I look forward to staying in touch, and please feel free to add my personal email to your address book: [PERSONAL EMAIL]

Sincerely,

[YOUR NAME]

[YOUR CONTACT INFORMATION]

Send your resignation letter to your boss. If your company has an HR department, you should send it there as well. Submit a digital version via email, but also print your letter and submit a paper copy so they can keep it for their records. And don’t forget to keep a copy yourself, especially if you sent it from a work email address that will soon be defunct!

How to Write a Resignation Letter

Plan Your Final Days

It’s easy to fall into a bit of a lazy rut on your final week or so. However, you want to go out on a high note and leave a strong lasting impression with your colleagues and bosses. That means maintaining your level of productivity, staying engaged, and pushing yourself to set your team up for future success. After all, you want to be remembered for being a hardworking, dedicated professional who inspired others. Here are a few things to do.

Prepare a transition document. Before you leave, outline the projects you’ve been working on, key information, and important contacts to pass along to your team or the person assuming your duties. This will endear others to you and is the ultimate way you can transition out of a role smoothly, without burning bridges.

Send a transition email. Craft a message to important company clients to tell them about your departure and last date on the job. Make a list of who would want to keep working with your team going forward and be sure to connect the dots.

And ask for references. You want to build a network of positive references for your future. Building and maintaining professional relationships is the cornerstone to career success.

Learn More!

Now that you know how to quit your job, it’s time to start thinking about your next job—hopefully, your dream job! Here are some resources to help you succeed in your next steps.

How to Change Careers 

Got 60 Seconds? Here’s How to Score Your Dream Job

How to Get Your Dream Job Fast

8 Things to Do on Your First Day at a New Job

10 Things You Should Never Do When Starting A New Job