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Resignations and Counter Offer Advice

How to Close the Deal

If you want to move your career forward, tendering your resignation is often an unavoidable task.

Be Professional

Time your resignation to be considerate of the working patterns of your boss. Bring a carefully prepared resignation letter to the meeting to show your resignation is an intention not a whim.

Explain the reasons for leaving in positive terms and avoid personal criticism of current colleagues wherever reasonably possible.

If you focus on the positives of the new position that are not available in your current role, most people will appreciate your reasons and offer you their congratulations despite their disappointment in letting you go.

Agree a provisional departure date at the time of resignation; it can always be changed, but sets up a framework within which everyone can plan for the future.

If you are hoping to leave before your official notice period ends, suggest targets for you to achieve that would allow them to be able to release you earlier than contractually required.

In the very unlikely event of the meeting turning sour, retain your professionalism and conclude the meeting at the earliest opportunity. They may well need time to reflect on your news. Such a response may further strengthen your resolve that you are doing the right thing.

Invitations and Promises to Stay

The worst possible thing you can do tactically is walk into a meeting intending to resign, and walk out agreeing to stay.

If sudden promotion prospects, salary improvements and great futures with the company appear, it is rather unlikely that they had been planned for you a few minutes earlier. If you genuinely feel you have heard something new that may influence your decision, confirm that your resignation and provisional departure date will stand, and agree to meet again in a few days once you have had the chance to reflect on the conversation, and confirm the accuracy of the new information. Are your colleagues of the same grade getting the same pay rise and promises? Have they had them already?

Discuss your situation with your recruitment consultant. Some less scrupulous employers have a consistent track record in relation to counter offers that may be worth you being aware of.

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