There’s nothing worse than staying in a job you hate. And at the start of a new year, everyone starts to review their life. If the job you’re in just isn’t cutting it, start looking for a new one, and well, resign.

You won’t be alone, that’s for sure. According to HR Magazine, January is the most popular month for job changes. So if your employer has any nouse about them, they will be expecting some people to down tools and quit.

Story Time

In my very early days of working in the media, I found myself being wooed into a job role, which I ended up hating with a passion. Not because of the job, but because of a tyrant of an editor, who took much delight in employing a young team that she could manipulate and bully.

Needless to say, I reached a breaking point. My soulsearching came when I got the flu for what seemed like the hundredth time. Constant sickness is always a sign that something isn’t right, especially if – like me – you are not a sickler.

I was young, mortgage-free and child-free, so the responsibilities were not like today! I remember calling into HR, explaining that I would not be returning to work because of her incessant bullying, and requesting that the HR adviser let the editor know that she be informed never to contact me on any grounds whatsoever. The relief I felt is beyond explanation. My flu passed so quickly, and within a couple of days, I was booked up for freelance work for the next three months or so. 

Harry and Meghan

Whatever side of the fence you’re on, these are two people (three, including gorgeous baby Archie!) who have simply had enough. 

Whether it’s the reported issues with relations amongst other Royals or the constant press scrutiny, they have decided to resign from their roles as senior royals.

Life is about making choices. Not everyone will agree with them. But staying in a job that doesn’t make you feel good, that impacts your mental, moral and or spiritual fibre isn’t for everyone – neither should it be!

How to Resign Properly

So, unlike my younger self; and Harry and Meghan, there is a right way to resign. This is definitely worth taking on board if you want a reference. To be honest, life is far too short to burn every single bridge – especially if you work in an incestuous industry. The last thing you want to do is get a bad name for yourself in a career suicide move that is bourne out of anger and upset.

Knowing that you’re leaving should be the cherry on the cake, so leave in style, using these steps:

1. Do it Professionally

Don’t get bitchy or insolent just because you know you have an end date to the drama in your workplace. I know you might want to take your resignation letter and ram it up someone’s throat. Don’t do it.

2. Don’t Say You’ve Found a Better Job!

Yes – your new job has all the bells and whistles! Fantastic! But avoid the temptation to sound like you are rubbishing the job that supported you all this while. Most employers know that an employee leaves because they have found something that’s better – for them! But they don’t want to hear you brag about your new job too much, or rubbish the one you’re leaving!

3. Thank Your Boss

Yes – even if it’s through gritted teeth and is a blatant lie, show some gratitude. You know, psychological studies show that when it comes to memory, people remember the first thing they hear and the last the best. So leave a lasting impression that is positive!

4. Make Yourself Available to Help in the Future!

Even if relations have broken down badly, there is the professional responsibility that will be required of you. Don’t go ghost as soon as you see your P45. Just like Harry and Meghan stating that they will be available to support the Queen when they step down from their senior roles, you should also offer to do the same to your replacement. Or at the very least, make sure your handover document is watertight. 

Don’t leave out significant bits of information because you want to show how valuable you are – it will backfire. Make your handover document perfect, without omissions and mistakes, so your replacement doesn’t bear the brunt of your bad feelings, and so you leave with your name intake when you leave!

5. Tell Your Boss You’re Leaving Before Your Colleagues

There’s nothing worse than hearing from other staff members that someone you manage told you they had a new job before you do! It just doesn’t sit well. You can see how badly this can go down by the media storm about the Queen not knowing about Harry and Meghan stepping down before their public statement.

Always bear in mind that you need a reference from your boss. You don’t want anyone to refuse to give you a reference, do you?

6. Write a Decent Reference Letter

If you don’t think you can write a reference letter that is professional and doesn’t carry underlying negative tones, get some help! Let someone review it for you, or use a resignation template.

Get a resignation letter template from job sites, Monster and Totaljobs.

Here’s to a new job for 2020 that will tick all your boxes!

7. Make a Royal Exit

If your employer has an exit interview policy, try to attend it. Be as cooperative as possible.

If your experience has been negative, give constructive feedback that can be used to improve things. If you are abusive, harmful and insulting, your views might not do much beyond making you look incredibly unprofessional.

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