What to Wear: Quitting Your Job
The importance and delicate nature of leaving a job is often underrated and under discussed. It’s much less sexy than the process of interviewing for and getting a new job (new is always more fun to think about!) but how you handle yourself when leaving a job can have a lasting impact on your life. About two years ago I found myself needing to quit my job to do what I never expected: I returned to the job I’d had before. In an effort to prepare for the situation, I Googled “what to wear when you quit your job” and I didn’t find anything helpful (it’s part of what led to me starting this blog – more on that here). I hope you find these tips helpful for times when you need to move to a new role…or for any situation that tests you.
1. Approach the conversation with respect: Leaving a job is often some combination of running away (old) and running to (new). Whatever the proportion of those two, treat giving notice with class. Schedule time with your supervisor and bring it up as a discussion “we should talk about the best way for me to transition out of this role/company.” You might be thinking you just want to peace out, but I promise you will not regret giving a little extra energy to the situation.
2. Consider what to wear: while not the same as an interview (you’ve been in your role for some time presumably!), there are similarities. You want to look polished and professional, but more relaxed than you did coming in – don’t want to risk looking like you are trying too hard. The outfit shown here is an ideal uniform for many situations, including this one. It’s also season-less: you can wear it with a jacket and tights in the winter or without for the summer.
3. Be Gracious: Everyone says not to burn bridges…because it’s true! Be gracious even if you think you will never need any of the folks again and you are putting everything in your rear-view. The truth is, you really don’t know what will happen and how paths will cross again. I’ve found that the higher and higher you go in your career, the more the hiring gets done outside the official channels – people inquire around their networks for information on potential hires, etc. Take the time to really colse out your affairs at your old role. Every last bit of effort counts and will reflect on your true work-ethic and character. Write thank you notes! They are always a good idea – you can follow a similar formula to what I talked about here.
Photography by David Kim.