George and Mary-Lynn

Moving On to Move Up

By Bigg Success Staff
06-13-08

Life Changes

At some point in your career, you may decide that you’ve reached a plateau with your employer. You realize that you can’t advance the way you’d like without a change.

You have to move on in order to move up.

Making a decision like this is (or should be) a logical process, but actually acting upon it can be very emotional. Especially when you’re leaving people with whom you’ve had a long-term relationship.

One of those people may be your boss. That boss who has been more than just a boss. There could be many words to describe the role he or she has played in your career.

Mentor. Cheerleader. Coach. Supporter. Trainer. Advisor.

Your boss may have become almost a surrogate father or mother to you. Your relationship has gone past the professional; you have become friends.

How do you tell this person about your decision? 

Be upfront and honest

If you truly value your boss, he or she deserves to know why you’re leaving. Let them know that you feel it’s time to move on. Tell them what you plan to do and what your timetable is.

Be appreciative
Thank them for what they’ve taught you. Let them know how glad you are that you got to work with them. Offer to help train someone to take your place. Let them know that they can contact you should a question arise once you leave.

Fulfill your obligations

Honor the commitments you made as part of your employment agreement. For example, if you signed a non-compete agreement, don’t compete with your former employer during the agreed-upon time frame. It’s that simple.

Keep the door open

If you handle it right, your former employer may be a tremendous resource in your new career. Just because you leave the firm doesn’t mean the relationship has to end altogether. Let your boss know that you would like to stay in touch.

Be prepared to go
If you’ve done all of the above, you’ve handled your separation in the most professional manner. That doesn’t mean your boss will do the same. Be prepared to leave the moment you tell your boss your plans.

Different companies and different people have their own ideas on how to handle a departing employee. Even if you do it all the right way, they may still proceed aggressively.

That’s okay, though, because you can look at yourself in the mirror knowing that you did it in style. You’ve moved on to move up!

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