How to Leave a Job Gracefully

The time has come to bid your current work digs farewell, but you want to make sure you do so on a positive note, right?  Avoid last minute blunders and the potential to burn bridges with valuable colleagues and connections by following these steps:

Write a Sincere Resignation Letter

Your letter should include the basics such as your notice of resignation and last date of employment, but it can also more heartfelt statements as well.  Share how much you have learned or enjoyed your work.  How has the organization helped you grow and develop?  What projects have you particularly enjoyed or excelled in?  Use this opportunity to reflect on the positive and express your gratitude.

Wrap Up Lose Ends

Some organizations are better than others at filling your vacant role after your departure.  In either case, it’s best to finish projects you’ve been working on.  If you know who will be the go-to after you are gone, schedule a meeting to go over the project status.  Organize your files and make sure that others know where to find necessary items.

Create Guides or Notes for Your Replacement

Pass on valuable organizational or project-specific information for the person stepping into your shoes.  Are there policies or procedures that would be helpful to share?  What about passwords or technical steps?  Compiling this data that could take others weeks to find is not only goodwill, but could also earn you brownie points with your former colleagues and supervisors.

Ask for LinkedIn Recommendations & Endorsements

Once you’ve left such a positive reflection upon your former colleagues and supervisors, now is the time to ask for them to spread the word on social media.  Recommendations are best requested while still employed or shortly after your departure, as others’ can still speak in specific detail about your skills and work ethic.

Offer to Stay in Touch

Don’t let the communication be one-sided, as you can spread the love too.  Write an email with your future contact information and offer to help answer questions that may arise (within reason, of course).    


What can be an uncomfortable experience could end up a much more enjoyable one as you take the time to reflect and connect with colleagues who have made a positive impact on your career.