How Do I Resign?

You've only gone and got yourself a new job. Well done!

And now uncertainty and dread have kicked in. How to resign?

I wonder at this point how many people have gone through this part of the process in their minds. Or whether they've just managed each part of the process, the searching, the application, the interview, the second interview, the offer, individually. Maybe not even expecting to get this far.

And now you're here. What next?

One thing is for sure, whatever the situation is at work, whether you love your boss or hate him/her, can count your colleagues amongst your friends or can't wait to see the back of them, this part of the process requires the same amount of planning, finesse and careful execution as all the others. Because burning bridges is for other people, not you.

Here's my five-point guide to resigning in style.

1. Write a resignation letter

It should be addressed to your boss, be professional, and precise, including your notice to leave. Remember to date and sign it.
I think you should take this opportunity to expand a little on the facts and include something positive if you can. Maybe a thank you for the support and training you've received, the opportunity you felt you had been given. This is not the place to list all your grievances.

We've attached a template below for you to use.

2. Prepare to be challenged or encouraged to stay

Your boss might be tempted to offer you a pay rise at this point.

Our advice? Remember why you're leaving and ignore the shiny things being offered as you're about to leave. It's a short term fix for them and you. They will not trust you to stay but it buys them time to plan. You'll realise within six months that it was never about the money. And if it WAS about the money then you should have raised this with your boss before you decided to go job hunting and saved everyone the trouble.

3. Find an appropriate time to speak to your boss and resign verbally

And once that conversation has been had, hand them the letter you drafted.

4. Comply with your contract and make sure you work your notice

Some employers will release you early if you ask, but don't take it upon yourself to leave earlier without permission. You want a reference, right?

5. Expect an exit interview

These are not always held, but nonetheless, you may be asked to attend an exit interview before you go. The point of this is for your employer to understand more fully why you're leaving.
This is your opportunity to be honest about the issues you have faced. But remember to be diplomatic and calm. If you have been asked to this meeting it's possible that the business cares about how they are perceived and are working on improving it.

It's a pretty simple process but be sure to do it well and you will be remembered favourably.

Good luck in your new job. You deserve it!

Contact us now for a free, no-obligation chat. Contact Clare here.

Clare Wight is the founder and Managing Director of Clarity Appointments, an independent recruitment specialist. She served as a Regional Director for The Employment Agents Movement, supporting other independent recruiters.

She remains an active member of Recconnect (formerly Members Only), a recruitment leadership network promoting high ethical standards, collaboration, diversity, equity and inclusion.

She believes business owners are more fulfilled and higher-performing when they provide emotional and professional business support to other business owners, even those they deem to be competitors. She does this actively, whilst challenging and updating her skills and knowledge of the recruitment sector, enabling her to offer the best advice to firms looking to make their next hire.

Template Resignation Letter [19.89 KB]