How to Resign and Leave Your Job Gracefully

There doesn't have to be bad blood.
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After a series of fake sick leaves for job interviews, Clarisse finally got a job offer from the company she's been eyeing but is feeling anxious about how to resign from her current job without burning bridges.

Saying she's excited and anxious at the same time, the 24-year-old marketing professional has verbally accepted the job offer of another company but has yet to sign the contract since she still has to resign from her current job -- one that she has had for over three years.

"Humahanap pa kasi ako ng tiyempo na sabihin sa boss ko kasi kaka-resign lang din ng dalawa kong officemate, baka mapag-initan pa ako," Clarisse, who asked not to reveal her real name, told reportr.

"Iniisip ko din kasi baka pahirapan ako sa clearance kapag bigla ko na lang sinend yung resignation letter ko," she added.

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Voluntary resignations across all industries in the Philippines nearly doubled in 2021 with a 176% increase according to a study by human capital management platform Sprout Solutions, showing that the phenomenon dubbed as the "Great Resignation" is happening locally too.

When the right opportunity to quit a job presents itself, how does one do so without burning bridges?

Professionalism is key when resigning and leaving gracefully, said Hasmin Miroy of Life Coach Philippines, noting that employees have no control over how resignations are accepted by their bosses but can manage how they do it.

"You can only control yourself so do it professionally. Follow your company's rules and procedures when it comes to resignations and if there's an opportunity to discuss it with your boss, then do so," Miroy told reportr.

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For those who consider their bosses as friends and mentors outside of work, Miroy said it would be "good" to discuss plans to resign before actually quitting.

"If you have a good relationship with your boss that goes beyond work, it would be good to talk to them if you've been thinking about resigning, why you plan to resign, and if there have been problems. Baka naman kasi it's a problem that can be solved without you resigning," Miroy said.

Not all resignations are due to bad experiences and toxic work cultures too, some are for growth and better opportunities, and good bosses know this according to Miroy.

"A good boss will understand your reasons for resigning if it's for your own good and will look out for your career," she said.

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Here are tips from life coach Hasmin Miroy on how to resign professionally and leave gracefully:

Be honest

When leaving a job, be honest about your reasons for quitting. Is it because of a better opportunity? A chance for career growth?

If it's because of the work environment or your boss, Miroy said it's ideal to discuss these issues with the human resources management of the company so that the problems can be addressed for the benefit of other employees.

"Whatever your reason is for resigning, be truthful about it. Later on kasi, if the company finds out that you lied, you don't just end up ruining that relationship that you have with them if you do have one, you also risk your credibility," she said.

Be professional

Aside from following company rules when it comes to resignations, Miroy said professionalism includes one's attitude when it comes to quitting.

"Don't let your boss look dumb na alam na pala ng lahat na magre-resign ka tapos you haven't submitted your resignation letter pa pala or hindi pa alam ng boss mo pero pinag-uusapan na ng iba," she said.

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Keep in mind also that badmouthing co-workers is one thing and it's another to report valid work-related problems or complaints.

Finish your tasks

How you do your work until your last day with the company says a lot about your work values and professionalism, Miroy said.

When resigning, make sure that you finish your tasks and tick off all the requirements you need for resigning.

"If you have to return equipment, do that. If you need to turn over files or work, do that also. Huwag yung parang mawawala ka na lang na parang bula," Miroy said.

Say goodbye

Whether the work environment was healthy or toxic, it's professional to bid your bosses and colleagues goodbye according to Miroy.

"If your boss has been good to you, say thank you or give a farewell gift. Say goodbye to your workmates too kasi usually you've become friends with them," she said.

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And even though you've gone separate ways with your boss and colleagues work-wise, Miroy said it's best to keep in mind that friendships you've developed should not be left behind in the office.

"Keep in touch with your former colleagues because all of you could pursue different things in your careers but you can always be friends with one another," Miroy said. "You don't have to quit friends when you leave a job."

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