How to Avoid Problems When Transitioning to a New Opportunity
As a recruiter, I'm often talking with candidates about potential new job opportunities on behalf of my clients. I understand that looking for a new job can be very stressful. There are always so many unanswered questions while going through the process. For job seekers who are currently unemployed, you have the added pressure of getting that stream of income to flow again. For those who are working, the last thing you want is for your employer to find out something is wrong and you are looking to leave. To be found that you are looking for a new role before an offer has been extended could be detrimental to your current job security.
All of this stress is put to ease that moment a simple email or phone call comes through. It’s the call that you impressed everyone in your interview and are being offered the position. Phew! Now all that stress is over...or is it? There can actually be a few last hurdles to jump. Here are some various questions and suggested responses that I would recommend to help make the easiest transition possible.
A Review of Resignation FAQ's:
- How much time do I offer when I leave my position? I would always suggest that you give your employee at least two weeks’ notice from when you want to start a new role. If you are in a leadership role or an integral part of the organization you may want to offer more time. Anything beyond two weeks you would want to discuss with your new employer to make sure they understand. Giving a month is not unheard if both parties are in agreeance with that time frame.
- What if I am made a counter offer? Changing jobs for a monetary reason alone is never a wise idea. Typically there is a deeper reason why you are looking for a new role. A little more money at the end of each month is not going to fix what personal or lifestyles issues you want to change at work. If presented with a little more money is that really going to fix the reason why you started this job search? Probably not. Most importantly though is that you just let your employer know you were out shopping for a new job. They may need you to survive in the short run, but they won’t forget this decision. Should there be any shortage of work or downsizing you have now put yourself at a much higher risk of being let go. Read more here.
- Do I write a formal letter of resignation? I always think that it is a good idea to write one ahead of time. This shows that you have put a lot of thought into your decision and you are prepared to move on. Writing about your resignation can relieve a little stress and mentally prepare you for your notice conversation to show that this is really happening.
- What if your boss is on vacation or out of office when you want to give notice? Timing is everything and I would not hold off just because of this. If your boss will be gone for just another day or two I would save the conversation for a face to face meeting. On the other hand if they are going to be gone long enough to where it effects the timeline to start your new position I would find someone similar in the organization to have a conversation with.
- What type of knowledge transfer do I need to do? I would recommend that you be as helpful as possible to make sure that you are not burning a bridge. If there is any sort of information that you can pass off to your replacement or someone similar in your organization than you should offer to do so. Not only will this ease the pain with your current employer, but it will also give you something else to focus on. You may start to become anxious the closer you get to your last day of work but having something very specific to accomplish will help you get through your final days with your previous employer.
These are just five suggestions to help you as you transition out of your old role and into your new role. Everyone has a different experience and there are plenty of factors that can affect how you plan on leaving an organization. If nothing else, I would suggest that you leave raw emotion out of it and try to stay as professional as possible. Do everything you can to keep a level head and try not to jeopardize your current employment and offer as much assistance as you can before you leave. You never know when you maybe falling back on your professional network in the future. People always remember your first and your last days of employment. Make sure you leave on a good note!