How to Resign Without Burning Bridges
Leaving a job is never an easy thing to do - especially if you loathe the slave master that hired you. But keeping contacts in good shape is important. As they say, it's a small world, and you never know who you'll run into in the future. Plus, heading into a new job, you'll want ace references, and however much you disagree with and don't get along with your current boss, most people still need their good word for the future.
A few tips for keeping old bridges in tact:
1. Keep the Snark to Yourself
We all know how hard it is to keep your mouth shut after you shoot out that resignation e-mail to the entire company. The thought of walking into your boss's office all Peter Gibbons in Office Space-style and setting him straight is highly appealing. But resisting that urge to step up to the man is key if you want to be able to keep that job on your résumé. Find an alternative means to release that pent up frustration.
2. Give Ample Notice
Two weeks notice is plenty of time for a company to get the ball rolling on hiring your replacement, but this timeline can vary greatly considering your role in the company. Be conscientious of that fact. If you're working as an assistant or office manager, chances are two weeks will be plenty of time to find and hire someone, but if you're the Vice President of Consumer Relations, you may want to give your superiors a month's notice, since that position is likely to not be a quick hire.
However, if you are miserable in your job and are leaving for reasons of harassment or your job is making you physically ill, do your two weeks time and get out. No one deserves to work in an unhealthy environment for an extended period.
3. Don't Slack Off
It's normal to feel less pressed when your position has an expiration date, but slacking off in the weeks leading up to your departure could make you look lazy, incompetent, and careless. Inevitably, there will an increased amount of stress from other co-workers affected by your leave and not being helpful and timely with assignments won't make them particularly partial to you once you're out the door.