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Job Seeker Advice: Leave Your Old Job Without Burning Bridges

November 5th, 2020

Preparing to start a new job can be an exciting opportunity. It can also be stressful, however, especially as you consider how to leave your old job gracefully.  

Why You Need to Leave on Good Terms 

It can be tempting just to shut the door on your old job and not look back. When you take efforts to leave on good terms with your team and employer, however, you gain several benefits. 

For example, your old boss and co-workers can serve as references and recommenders in future job searches. You’ll be able to refer to them when you need someone to vouch for your skills, work ethic, and consideration for others. 

Just like you, your colleagues probably won’t stay in the old job forever. They may also move on to other companies, where they may open up further career opportunities for you.  

Finally, if you ever want a job at your former company again, it’s important not to burn any bridges that might let you return there.  

How to Leave Your Old Job Gracefully 

To keep your bridges intact as you move on to the next chapter in your career:  

1. Tell your boss first, and tell them in person.

Your boss may be disappointed, but they’ll understand the value of hearing the news first. When you tell your boss first, you give them the chance to present the news to the team in the best way for the team and company. 

2. Practice diplomacy.

“Why are you leaving?” is a common question for those moving on to a new job. Resist the urge to respond by listing your grievances with the team or company. Instead, focus on how this new opportunity benefits your career.  

3. Tie up loose ends.

Give at least two weeks’ notice, so your team and boss can better manage the fallout of having your position empty. Clean up your workspace and turn in any company property you have before you leave.  

At THE RIGHT STAFF, LLC, we recognize the importance of building a professional network that can sustain you throughout your career. When you work with us, we become a part of your network, helping you connect with some of the best jobs and employers in Minnesota. Contact us today to learn more.  

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