There is no easy way to begin the process of separating from one’s place of employment. Yet there are definitely modes of ensuring that you make a clean break with as much class and dignity possible.
Discretion is key. Taking out a full page ad in the local paper or posting countdown comments on your Facebook page is not recommended. Be sure that your boss and human resource department are the first to know of your intentions. There is a method to the madness of job separation. Informing loose lipped colleagues shouldn’t take precedence over ensuring that you take it to those who need to know first. And even when you have decided to share with others, your organization may still have a process that needs to take precedence over your wanting to shout it from the mountain top. Once you have done your due diligence, then feel free to take the time to notify those who really need to know in your circle of influence.
Support your successor. No one likes to enter a position with loose ends left untied. The best gift you can give your last job is to know you left it intact and organized. If it means setting aside some time each day to touch base with your successor, make it happen. No one is in your head. You will have to jot things down, organize folders, clean out your office and make the transition a smooth one. Use the golden rule on this one. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
Keep in touch. Let’s be honest, leaving a job is akin to a loss. You’re walking away from some meaningful relationships. Your work family sees you more than your real one. Those water cooler convos helped you through some tough times. The meetings after the meetings kept you sane and functioning. There are some people you are happy to be rid of. But remember your community isn’t as big as you think. That six degrees of separation is for real. And you never know who knows who. Note the connections you want to maintain. Some will be for personal reasons. Others for professional reasons. Cutting ties and never looking back isn’t recommended. Don’t cut your nose and spite your face.
At day’s end you want to be a class act in how you separate from your job. You do not want to be the one known for being messy. One’s reputation is too important to put on the line. Keep those matches hidden away. Burning bridges never helped anyone.