Another important point to remember is to always review your current contract or letter of agreement. If notice is required to be given, do this so you will not violate the contract’s obligations. For example, if your contract requires you to give 30 days’ notice before leaving, you must do so to avoid the company claiming you are in breach of contract. If you do not resign properly, you may be sued for damages.
Damages in such cases are typically calculated at the employer’s cost of training a replacement. However, if you resign prematurely at an important time (e.g., during market week if you are a salesperson, or right before a customer is consummating an important deal in which your services are required, but the deal is blown because you leave), the damages could be significant.
There are occasions where an employer will release you from your obligations immediately after you give proper notice. This is because the employer may not want you around for, say, 30 days after it knows you will be leaving. If your contract requires notice, offer it but anticipate, discuss, and seize the opportunity that you may be forced to leave immediately at the employer’s request. If the employer asks you to leave, ask to receive the wages you would have earned during the notice period as part of a severance package. While this may not be forthcoming,. it doesn’t cost anything to ask and some employers are amenable to this.
Finally, since the employer may tell you to get out immediately after you give notice, anticipate this may occur and plan accordingly. Consider removing valuable contents from your office before giving notice, because the employer may tell you to vacate the premises and you won’t have the opportunity later. Get your affairs in order. Select the best time to resign to suit your needs knowing this may occur.
Next week: more tips and strategies on this important subject.