So, that great new job offer in Singapore is in the bag and you’ve just handed in your resignation letter. It’s time to kick back, relax and just coast your way through to the final day of your notice period, right? Wrong!
We all know how important it is to make a great impression when we start a new job, but what many workers fail to appreciate is that how they behave in that period between handing in their notice and actually leaving the company is every bit as vital. Treat it as a rest period during which to recover before moving on to your next role, do nothing more than make a half-hearted effort to tidy up a few loose ends or worse still, take the opportunity to stick two fingers up at your boss while you’ve still got the chance and you could be facing the repercussions for years to come.
Before I come to a few useful tips to bear in mind while working out your notice period, there are a couple of things which are worth mentioning in relation to resigning from a current position. First of all, before you even think about sitting down to compose your resignation letter, always make sure that you have a written job offer from your new employer in Singapore. Offers made verbally over the telephone can easily be rescinded, leaving you high and dry. Also, as a mark of common courtesy, do let your current boss know that you are going to be moving on before you present him or her with your resignation letter. Particularly if your departure is unexpected, it will help to ease the blow slightly, and it also leaves the door open to negotiations and counter offers.
Once the deed is done and your resignation letter has been handed over, the first thing to remember is that you are still an employee of your current company right up until the last day. It doesn’t matter how bitter you feel about your employer or how anxious you are to move on, the organization is paying you right up until the end and you have an obligation to perform your role to the same (hopefully high) standards that you have always upheld. Don’t be fooled into thinking that you will just disappear under the radar now that you have resigned or that anything you do after handing over your resignation letter won’t count, because it will. In fact, the chances are that your employer in Singapore is likely to keep an even closer eye on you than usual during your notice period and as your behavior during this time is going to be the last thing that is remembered about you, you need to make sure that you make a great parting impression.
The attitudes that employees choose to adopt when they are on the way out of an organization truly define their levels of professionalism. True professionals try to make the transition between their own leaving and the starting of their replacements as smooth as possible. Their aim is to ensure that the company suffers no disruption or inconvenience as a result of their departure. Not only do they make sure that their work is up-to-date and that their managers, colleagues and co-workers are fully briefed on the status of their projects, but they actively help to train their own replacements so that they can pick up easily where they themselves leave off. In essence, they demonstrate their accountability and their commitment right up to the very last moment in the job.
Particularly if you don’t feel very well-disposed towards your employer during those final few weeks, you might be wondering why you should bother to leave on a good note. Don’t forget though, that not only might you want your current boss to act as a reference for you, but there is even a possibility that you might encounter him or her again at some time in the future. For the sake of putting in that last little bit of effort, is it really worth taking the risk that your boss might spot your resume in a pile of applications and reject it because of the way that you behaved when you were on the way out? Who knows, as inconceivable as it might sound at the moment, you might even want to return to your present organization a few years down the line, so it is vital not to go burning any bridges.
Finally, however much animosity you might feel towards the company in Singapore that you are leaving, unless you choose to negotiate an earlier leaving date, never go before your notice period is up. Not only will it create an extremely poor impression if you leave your boss in the lurch, but you could be sued/penalized for breach of your employment contract.