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How to Quit Your Job – With Class

Updated: Mar 12, 2022

You’ve heard the stories – and may have witnessed – a “quit the job” exit drama. A waitress may have poured ice water in an obnoxious diner’s lap – or someone may have stormed out of an office in anger after “telling off” the boss. You may have even rehearsed your dramatic job exit in the mirror or in your mind.

Hopefully, those thoughts are simply fantasies and you can find a better – classier – way to leave your job. Here are some ways to leave your job with class and keep your professionalism intact:

  • Give notice. Offering a fair amount of notice before leaving your company in a lurch is the professional way to leave a job. During this interim time, your management can assess the situation and you’ll be able to exit with dignity.

  • Give your notice in person, if possible. It may not be possible to meet with your boss in person and email can be a good alternative. But, in most companies, you can find time for a brief meeting (or lunch) with a supervisor.

  • Don’t over-explain. It’s not necessary to explain all the details of why you’re quitting your job. You may want to provide more details to close co-workers and friends, but overall it’s not professional to give all the details of your departure.

  • Don’t discuss your job exit on social media. It might be tempting to take your workplace gripes to Facebook or Twitter, but it may hurt your professional persona if you do.

  • Have a plan just in case you face un-professionals. Sometimes your coworkers (and bosses) may not be happy with your decision to quit the job. Leave no stone unturned when it comes to leaving the job with politeness and forethought. You’ll be glad you did.

  • Leave a job with a strong performance. Never leave a company or job with unfinished business. If you can, leave a review of your job that will be constructive to hiring the next person. Never bash the job, but try to find the best qualities of it and mention some things that could be improved.

No matter how anxious you are to break out on your own and see your current job in your rear view mirror, give the company or current boss your undivided attention and expertise until the end. It may even mean that you stay longer than intended, but it will leave a good impression and you’ll be seen as the professional you are.

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