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Resign Yourself. It’s Later Than You Think

Let me guess.

Every hour of every day you’ve spend at your job, you’ve been writing your resignation letter.

Every time you suffer a management slight or a workplace injustice, you mentally add it to this virtual letter. Every idiotic request from your manager is tacked on, as is every insult you patiently suffer from your co-workers.

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No wonder your resignation letter is now 1,375 pages long.

This raises the question — should you send it?

Certainly, the resignation part makes sense, but you may not want to burn your bridges. You may someday want to cross that bridge and get another job. If you leave behind a big stink, your present company is unlikely to recommend you, though you can hope they will forget you. It’s unlikely, considering your performance, or lack thereof. Still, a flaming torch of a resignation letter may burn you forever.

Fortunately, there’s help available. Caroline Gray recently published “How to Write A Resignation Letter (Plus A Template) on the wide-open digital spaces of Glassdoor.com.

“If you have decided to leave your current employer,” Gray writes, “the professional and courteous thing to do is write a formal letter of resignation.”

In other words, try not to announce your resignation with DayGlo spray paint on the side of the CEO’s Tesla.

And if you’re thinking, as I know you are, that it would take a fleet of Teslas to provide you with enough space to list all your grievances, here’s another tip from Gray: “A resignation letter is brief, direct, and devoid of extraneous fluff.”

This will not be easy for you, since most everything you do, say, or think represents the fluffiest kind of fluff.

That’s where the template comes in.

Blogmeister Gray provides the business appropriate text below, with the subjects that require personalization in CAPS. All you have to do is fill in the blanks. Think of it as employment Mad Libs.

Feeling blank when it comes to filling blanks? That’s where I can help.

(SET ITAL) Dear BOSS’S NAME (“idiot” is acceptable, but I prefer something more respectful, like “jerk face”),

This letter serves as formal notice of my resignation from my position as JOB TITLE (“serf” would work nicely, or “disgruntled slacker”), effective DATE (you could put in the date of your initial employment, since you realized on day one that accepting this job was a career disaster. But in the spirit of leaving on good terms, you’ll want to provide a transition period. Give them until lunchtime on the day you submit the letter).

The past NUMBER (200 years is a good number. That’s what it feels like, anyway) years working at COMPANY (don’t remember where you work? Go outside and take a look at the building directory. That should narrow it down) have been some of the most rewarding experiences to date. (Gray doesn’t provide any options for the next two sentences. If you decide to add this pabulum, hold your nose or, better, hold your boss’s nose.) I’d like to particularly thank you for your time, support and encouragement of my professional growth. It’s been a pleasure working on such a talented team, and to be able to have done so under your leadership. (OK, you can stop gagging now.)

I’m committed to making this transition period as smooth as possible. I’ll continue to work on my SPECIFIC JOB RESPONSIBILITIES (goofing off and mouthing off and taking off at 2 p.m.) until my resignation. Following my departure, COLLEAGUE/REPLACEMENT (“no one” is the honest response. They’ll never find another sucker sufficiently desperate to take your job) will be the new point of contact.

I look forward to staying in touch, and please feel free to add my personal email to your address book: PERSONAL EMAIL (you’ll want to use a made-up email address here, since the last thing in the world you want is for these yahoos to keep in touch. How about MajorTom@mars.com. or ElmerFudd@thatdarnrabbit.com.)

Sincerely,
YOUR NAME (feel free to leave this blank. No one knows who you are, anyway)

YOUR CONTACT INFORMATION (the address of the nearest unemployment will suffice, or the nearest tavern) (END ITAL)

Good work! Now all you have to do is pack up your Hummel “Star Wars” figurines and leave. You won’t want to say goodbye, but do take your computer, your desk chair and the carpeting in your cube.

No one ever said you weren’t sentimental.

Bob Goldman was an advertising executive at a Fortune 500 company, but he finally wised up and opened Bob Goldman Financial Planning in Sausalito, California. He now works out of Bellingham, Washington. He offers a virtual shoulder to cry on at bob@bgplanning.com.

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