Thu | Sep 20, 2018

Glenford Smith | Burning your bridges

Published:Sunday | November 26, 2017 | 12:00 AM

QUESTION: Thank you for the valuable information you share. I would appreciate it if you could offer some advice to me. I have been working

fulltime without a contract at a company for almost four years. I have been offered a job that is more rewarding and much closer to home. This new job starts on December 4, 2017. Would it be fine to just give one week's notice because of the strict starting date of the pending job?


CAREERS: I am happy that you find the information shared in the articles valuable. Your letter had to be condensed because of its length.

You are going to leave your job. why do you have such a negative mindset towards it? There is someone right now who is jobless, for whom you are making space when you leave. Focus on the positive effects of your leaving. It will make the whole affair go easier and more enjoyably.

Make sure you include in your resignation letter words of thanks to your employer, expressing gratitude for employing you for the past four years.

At the time of writing, this is two weeks before the start date of the new job. You may submit your letter dated November 20, 2017 which would give you exactly two weeks. By the time you read this, a couple of days would have gone by, but if you check your email, I have sent a response. If you act with alacrity, that will give you precisely two weeks. You could then start your new job on December 4, immediately after.

You have stated in your letter that the starting date of the new job is going to prevent you from giving the usual two weeks' notice. If you act with promptness, this should not prevent you at all.

You have said, "Knowing my employer, even with two weeks' notice he is going to be upset that I'm leaving and may ask that I leave immediately anyway." Because of this, you seem to be of the opinion that whether you give your employer the two weeks' notice or not, your bridges will be burnt.

You seem to be reading the employer's mind. Even though there have been instances of him behaving a particular way, it is not wise to pre-empt the employer. The problem will be that you'll be reacting to a behaviour that the employer has not yet done. It is best if you go in to the employer and talk it over with him or her.

Tell your employer that you are very grateful for the opportunity that this job offered - you are grateful to him or her, specifically. Tell your boss you are going to pursue a job closer to home. Anyone can understand that. Don't go in expecting that your employer will be upset at you. It is your life, and you have every right to quit whenever you feel like it. just do it in the right way.

If things go as planned and your employer gets upset and asks you to leave, you can satisfy yourself that you did the right thing. And then you can leave with a clear conscience.

I wish you well in the new job.

n Glenford Smith is a motivational speaker and success strategist. He is the author of 'From Problems to Power' and co-author of 'Profile of Excellence'.