How to Let Your Employees Gracefully Quit Their Jobs

Mariana Toledo
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One of your employees has landed a new job elsewhere. In other words, they will approach you soon about resigning. Despite your desire to have your employees stay with you for the long haul, it's important to let them go so they can continue to grow. Allowing them to leave gracefully is your responsibility as well as theirs. The following tips outline how to help your employees resign gracefully, and how to set yourself and them up for success.

1. Setting both of you up for success

Your employee will want to have a conversation with you about their resignation. They should have a letter stating their departure date, where they can be contacted, and what projects remain. This is not the time to discuss why they are leaving, because that should be covered in the letter, and this type of question should be asked in the exit interview. You should discuss what needs to be done before their departure during this meeting. Their first priority should be to tie up loose ends and reassign projects to other employees. So, while they are still here, they can assist with the transition.

2. Graceful send off

Now that the resignation process has begun, it would be nice to organize an appropriate farewell for your employee. As a team, you'll be able to congratulate them on the next step in their career and celebrate their accomplishments. An employee's last memories of the office should be positive and professional. You can set up an outing for lunch with the team or make some time during the day to celebrate them.

3. Do not delay their resignation

It's important to make your checklist as soon as the employee has let you know they're leaving. Make their lives a little easier by having the things they'll need without them having to ask you. There are a few things you'll want to organize before they leave:

  • Organizing their last paycheck
  • Obtaining their address for additional paperwork
  • Planning to recruit their replacement
  • Conducting an exit interview

4. The perfect exit interview

Before leaving your company, this is the last impression the employee will have of you. Throughout the interview, make sure your tone is professional and positive. You don't want to appear bitter over their departure. You should ask open-ended questions rather than specific ones. Ask them to note anything they would improve instead of asking why they're leaving. Exit interviews are great opportunity to learn about things that are happening that you might not be aware of.

You should be able to handle your employees' resignations with grace and professionalism if you follow these four tips. Regardless of whether you saw it coming or it came as a total surprise, it's important to stay professional and support your employee during this process.


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