Leaving a job is never easy and often filled with many emotions, both for the employee and the employer.  There are so many reasons why employees leave positions, yet one thing is true – it is never a good idea to burn that bridge because you never know when you might need to cross it again!

Protecting your professional reputation and credibility should be a priority when you are looking to change positions.  It is best for all involved if you make your exit gracefully and on good terms.  The first step and probably most important step is how you present your two week notice.  While you may want to just quit immediately and not give any notice, tell everyone exactly what you think, or even slack off for the next two weeks, it is in your best interests to present a great two weeks’ notice.  Here’s how you can do that:

  • Keep it short.  Do not write an elaborate notice, airing everything you think is wrong with the company and your position.  Instead keep it to the point – state in the first sentence that you have accepted another position and this is your two weeks’ notice.  You can follow that with a couple of short sentences about your time with the company and how you have enjoyed your time there.
  • Honesty.  Be honest (within reason) about why you have decided to leave.  This is true whether putting in your notice or during an exit interview.  Do not exaggerate or be aggressive about any negative situations. 
  • Thank them.  It is best practice to always thank your current employer for the opportunity and the work relationship.  Do not be afraid to ask them for a recommendation or if you can list them as a reference in the future.
  • Your pledge.  Make sure that you ensure them that you will make the transition as smooth as possible.  Offer to train whoever they need you to, update policies and procedures if needed, and answer any questions anyone has. 

The excitement of accepting your new position may cause you to want to burn the bridge at your current job – you need to resist that urge and protect that bridge.  Leaving a position with a good relationship is very valuable and may come in handy one day.  Take the time to write a great two week notice letter.  It will benefit you greatly in the long run!

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