Most people will quit their job at some point in their careers – and often more than once. It can be both scary and exciting, but making big career choices can be difficult.
Quitting can be tied to unhappiness or lack of progression, which in turn can be associated with anger. BUT – don’t make a rash decision that you may ultimately regret.
It’s important to move for the right reasons and to move smartly. Here’s our top 6 tips when considering a career move:
It’s likely you won’t want to quit if you’re not 100% sure that your new position is going to start when you think it will. Be prepared to make a back-up plan, just in case the deal with your new employer doesn’t materialise. It’s very rare for this to happen, but we have seen people give their notice in before contracts are signed – and then find out that the unthinkable happens.
Job deals can ultimately be canned at the last minute. Sometime this is due to lack of funds or a downturn in business, however they can be withdrawn if you aren’t legally allowed to do the job you’ve accepted (e.g. through non-solicitation clauses, or even credit checks). Be sure to have your new job offer in writing, ideally including contracts. This way you will have more safety if your offer is rescinded.
Have some savings
If you're living paycheck-to-paycheck, it may hard to outright quit your job and financially survive until you secure your next position.
We’d suggest having at least 2 months of expenses in your accounts before you quit altogether (if not more). This will give you a good buffer to survive on whilst you are waiting for your new salary slip.
Give plenty of notice
Whilst four weeks / one month’s notice is standard and expected in most professions, the more time a departing employee can give, the better. This will help your company enable a smooth transition and will reflect well on your character.
Which brings us to:
Tell your line manager first and never burn a bridge
It’s a good idea to mention to your immediate boss that you are thinking of leaving, before formally informing your company in writing.
This will give them more time to prepare for your replacement and again will help with any future relationship you might have with your former company or line manager. It’s easy to think that you may never have anything to do with your incumbent boss ever again – but it’s surprising how often you might cross paths again in time.
Be direct, but diplomatic
When you quit a job, it's usually because there's a better opportunity for you out there. But if you are leaving because you’re unhappy, this can be more difficult to explain to your outgoing line manager.
Be direct and honest about your unhappiness, but stay away from criticism. This change is ultimately about you, so it’s important to remain positive.
Don’t slack off
It might feel fruitless, but the sensible advice is to keep working hard and avoid coasting for your remaining days in the office.
Step up your game if you can and leave no doubt that you are an exceptional employee. Don’t leave any baggage and finish on the up. This should leave you with a fresh outlook when you start your brand new dream job.