So now you’ve got the job! You paid attention, remained focused in your interview and followed our tips to the letter.
Congratulations! Call Mum, Dad, Grandma Jess (plus your bestie and the man in your life – if you haven’t already,) ASAP. It’s important to celebrate your achievements. But you’ve got one more hurdle to go through. How to leave your old job like a pro.
Believe it or not there is an etiquette to leaving and starting new jobs. You should always try to leave the current job as positively as possible and not burn your bridges. Even if you are counting the days until you leave, remain composed and polite in your comments whilst you are continually asked why you are leaving. Remember the knowledge and skills you gained there probably helped you secure your dream job, which made it all worth it and placed you on the path you are on today.
Read our checklist on steps to leaving your old job
Give notice and inform your manager
Dig out your old contract and check the amount of notice you are obliged to give. Typically, it is four weeks but it’s best to be sure. Ask to have a word with your manager and explain that whilst you have enjoyed your time with the company and their support and guidance has been invaluable, you are looking forward to new challenges and have found a new job. They may be shocked and saddened but ever the professional, ought to wish you the best.
Manager offers to ‘up’ your salary
If are offered a counteroffer, asking you what you would require to stay? Think smart. What made you want to leave in the first place? If you were offered the job title that you are leaving for and the salary was matched, would you stay? Only you can make this decision.
Check to see if you have any annual leave left. It might be wise to get your leave paid to you rather than leave earlier as it can boost your last wage, particularly if you get paid in advance. The changeover between pay days could leave you shorter than you are used to in the first month to six weeks, even if you will eventually be paid more in the long term.
However, if you have savings and that does not bother you, a week or two off between jobs might be exactly what the doctor ordered – hmm, impromptu holiday anyone?
Clear out the drawers, shred old documents and put together a handbook or folder to help your replacement know where things are, and get an understanding of what you do. It can be therapeutic and it could highlight to your manager all that you do in your daily tasks, and hopefully the person you replace does the same for you at your new job to help you settle in well.
Your colleagues are probably flitting between how much they will miss you, and what they are going to do without you? The transitional period of you leaving may impact how they are able to do their own job, try to be a little sympathetic, as you mark off the days in your calendar and cheerfully whistle at your desk.
The team may want to organise a cake and a card or if you have a fun team, after work drinks. Either way, acknowledge or celebrate this end of an era, it’s important to leave on good terms, it shows a level of maturity and professionalism. If you work in a small sector you may bump into your old colleagues in the future, need a resume or even have to come back if your circumstances ever change, so do not get too tipsy at your leaving do!
For good measure send a short sweet email, thanking the team and company for all their support over the years and acknowledge the great experience you had during your time with the company.
Enjoy your leaving drinks!
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