Professional way to resign You've been highly professional during the interview process and have landed the position.

Now is the time to be just as professional in resigning from your current employer.

Make an appointment with your manager and prepare a brief letter of resignation. (Consult your recruiter for tips on writing an effective letter)

  • During the meeting calmly and concisely explain that you have made a decision to resign, and make it clear that your decision is final.
  • Retain your poise if the meeting becomes tense.
  • Don't burn bridges.


Be Wary of a Counteroffer

    It's natural to resist change and avoid disruption, and your present employment is no exception. If you're doing a good job your employer will not want to lose you, and you can expect a counter-offer even though you have accepted a position elsewhere.

    So long as you haven't started your new position, the company and your boss are going to woo you. You'll be seduced with more money; you may get, or at least be promised, a promotion. The appeal will be emotional in nature. There will be an apology made in the form of not knowing of your dissatisfaction. Your boss may even enlist a senior vice president or the president to help convince you that you're making a mistake.

    • In short, it is guaranteed that you will hear the following in some form or another:

    • "We have plans for you that will come to fruition the first of next month - it's my fault for not telling you."

    • "I shouldn't do this, but I'm going to let you in on some confidential information. We're in the process of reorganizing and it will mean a significant promotion for you within six months."
    • "We'll match your new offer and even better it by "x" percent. This raise was supposed to go into effect the first of next quarter anyway, but because of your fine record we'll start it immediately."
    • "When I told our president of your decision, he told me he wants to have dinner with you and your spouse as soon as possible. You just tell me when, and he'll drop everything to discuss this situation with you."

    The employment marketplace is such that talented employees are in demand. If you are currently employed by a good and progressive company, you should not have to resign in order to get the raise you deserve.

    • While a counteroffer may be flattering, there can be drawbacks. And think about the following:

    • Is the counteroffer a ploy to avoid short-term inconvenience?
    • Will your career track remain blocked?
    • Will you still be reporting to a person you distrust?
    • Will your responsibilities be expanded?
    • Have others who've accepted counteroffers in your company been fairly treated?

    If your answers to any of these questions are not positive, then it's time to move on. Remember, your first decision is most likely your best decision. If a counter offer puts you in a dilemma, contact your recruiter for advice. Here are some good reasons for not accepting a counteroffer:

    • You have now made your employer aware that you are unhappy. From this day on, your loyalty will always be in question. When promotion time comes around, or when times get tough, your employer will remember who is loyal and who is not.
    • Accepting a counteroffer is really a belated confirmation of the contributions you have made.
    • Where is the money for the counteroffer coming from? All companies have wage and salary guidelines that must be followed. Is it your next raise early?

Making the Transition
As a professional, your career decisions must be made objectively; free of the emotional pressures you are likely to experience. Others will try to influence you, but sometimes only you know the extent of your dissatisfaction with your current position.

Resigning a position where you were personal friends with some of your co-workers is a difficult moment. Remember, their intention is to tell you how much they like you, not to undermine your decision making about your new position.

It is commonly thought that the most appropriate and flattering response to someone resigning a position is an emotional outpouring of "The old place won't be the same without you." Anticipate this is going to happen.

Before the word that you are leaving spreads, be prepared for how you are going to address your co-workers. The most professional, and probably most honest and accurate, is to simply tell people that this new opportunity was simply too good to pass up.

Last Words of Advice
By making a well thought out decision before you accept an offer, you can avoid many problems. Remember that your recruiter is a professional career counselor and is a valuable resource as you work through the interviewing and hiring process. Be candid in discussing your concerns as well as your aspirations, and trust your own thoughtful decision making process.