No, it’s not really about love. We are talking about resigning from a job. But there are similarities.
We’ve all learned not to quit the current job before we have that new job, no matter how bad the old job. So based on your skills, ambitions and keen ability to seek out new opportunities, you land that new one. Joy abounds, visions of big paychecks dance in the mind, maybe an IPO. You can’t wait to tell the old boss that a new opportunity beckons and it’s way better that this dull, tired place. But you take the high road and explain the situation in a very professional manner, as you should. You say something like, “My time here has provided good experience and I appreciate all that you have done for me. Even though I wasn’t looking for a new job, something has come along that better meets my interests, so I am resigning.”
In romance speak, “I will always cherish the time we spent together. You are a truly special person and you will always be in my heart. Even though you are very important to me, I need to move on. I have met someone else.”
More often than not, what your current employer will try to do is talk you out of resigning, even after the decision is made. There might be shock and surprise. If you are a stellar performer, and we all know you are, usually, a response will come right away in the hopes of keeping you around. A little more money will be offered, maybe matching the other offer, and the promise that more career opportunities and promotions are right around the corner. The old boss might say, “We’ve done so much for you and you are just about to reap the benefits of all your hard work. I am disappointed and I doubt you will find what you want in that new position.” Now there is a more complex decision to be made with emotion involved. It happens every day and it’s a perilous journey.
In romance speak the response might be, “I can change. I didn’t know you felt this way. I had plans for our future and the best is yet to come. I still love you and I know we can work it out.”
Admit it, the bloom is off the rose. There is, “someone else”. If you are the one accepting the resignation, trying to talk someone out of it might be a lost cause. It’s like when someone tells you “I don’t love you anymore” and your response is, “Yes you do.” That conversation usually doesn’t end well. Does it? It is probably a matter of time before the relationship will end any way.
For you the resigner, you need to evaluate why you are considering making the move in the first place. Was it pay, was it opportunity, was it the commute, or just the itch to do something else? The big question is, are you willing to give up the equity and security in staying put or is it really over and time to move on? There is a cost to changing jobs in the form of relationships and tenure not to mention it is a pain to figure out where the bathroom is in the new place.
Should I stay or should I go? The saw cuts many ways and the decision is never easy. Maybe the grass is greener. Maybe that greener grass won’t be so green after all.
Like in love, the decision to resign is never easy and can live with you for a while. Be careful.