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How Not To Write A Resignation Letter

Published: Wednesday 10th June 2015

A resignation letter with a red coloured pencil on top


There are many different reasons for people to want to resign from their job. In most cases, they will have accepted an offer for a different position or have made plans to start a business of their own. In other cases, resigning can be a bit of an impulsive decision. Whatever your situation, you will probably have to write a letter to make your resignation official. What should you avoid? 

Writing An Essay

A resignation serves an administrative duty first and foremost. There is nothing you should write that you are not able to fit in five sentences at most. This is not the platform for you to provide your employer with all the reasons behind your decision, nor should it be seen as an opportunity for you to list your suggestions for how the company could improve after you’ve left. In many cases, you will be offered an exit interview before your last day, leaving you with an opportunity to discuss your reasons for moving on in a little more detail. 

Cracking Jokes

The whole process of resigning can be awkward, to say the least. But resignation letters are official documents, meant to be filed in your employer’s administration. This means that they should be written in a serious, professional tone and are not suitable for the use of office humour.

Bragging About Your New Job

You would probably never have been offered your new job if it wasn’t for the job from which you are currently resigning, so make sure to show a little respect. Your boss or colleagues don’t need to know that you are being offered a big rise in pay or that you will be working on more challenging projects. And they definitely do not need a reminder of how brilliant you are. Instead, be positive and focus on the skills and experience you acquired while working at this company.  

Making It Personal

Do you really want to leave the building pointing fingers? In most careers, you are likely to come across the same people at different stages. Be careful about blaming your boss for poor management or one of your colleagues for being lazy. One day you might have to work with them again, so it’s probably a good idea not to burn your bridges.  

Forgetting To Thank Your Employer

Whatever your reasons for leaving, you were offered a professional opportunity by your employer when you started your current job. And it has been paying your rent for the last few years as well. Thanking your employer is fair and professional. It also means you can leave the job with dignity and a higher chance of being given a good reference.

If you can’t wait to write your resignation letter, why not download the Zoek app to let your new job find you? The app for faster, smarter recruitment can be downloaded on IOS or Android.


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