I am resigning from my position

SHARE   |   Monday, 14 November 2016   |   By Isang Lekhutile

Some of us have tendered resignation in the past. Yes, resigning or notifying the employer of the intention to leave work. It's time for you to make a change, be it a new career path or simply a new challenge. The procedure for resigning is simple enough: give notice, preferably in advance. Whether you’re leaving your employer on good terms, it is proper protocol to submit a letter of resignation. If you don't want to burn any bridges and create obstacles to future opportunities, you must be especially careful and considerate. Resigning is easy, but resigning gracefully is not. While the purpose of the resignation letter is to inform your employer that you’re quitting, you can use it as an opportunity to build relationships and leave on a positive note. A resignation is the formal act of giving up or quitting one's office or position and resignation is a personal decision to exit a position. When you resign from employment, it's a good idea to provide the company with a professional resignation letter informing your employer that you will be resigning. This formal letter leaves the company with a strong and positive impression of you as an employee. That can be helpful in the future, if you need a reference from the company or your manager. Plus, it's always a good idea to put important information in writing — that way, you can ensure that your last day is known, and there can be no questions about when you are departing the company. Good resignation letters and letters of resignation acceptance are important for individuals and employers, so that the process of leaving a job is properly and professionally managed. Certain contracts of employment state how resignation notice should be given – particularly how to be given and to whom – if your contract states a procedure for resignation take note accordingly. If you resign verbally (assuming you do not wish to later withdraw it) you must confirm the resignation in writing. Failing to do so could leave you vulnerable to losing certain rights and if you then go on to leave the job you could be dismissed without notice due to failing to show up for work, on the basis that you had not formally resigned.  Organisations and individuals are liable to dispute or penalty if resignation is not handled properly; resignation letters and resignation acceptance letters are therefore vital mechanisms for handling the resignation and leaving process properly.


It's very important to keep letters of resignation and resignation acceptance positive – always leave friends behind, not enemies. See the love and spirituality page if you need reassurance about doing the right thing. Try to behave with compassion and humane, even if the other side doesn't. Also by keeping resignation letters positive you avoid the risk of libel or defamation, which carry potential legal liabilities for employee and employer. Positive resignation letters also increase the likelihood that your boss will provide a positive reference for you if you need one. As a general rule, the more support you need from your boss then the more positive and appreciative you should be and particularly to maintain a positive relationship with your line manager, give verbal notification of your resignation to your boss first. Then follow-up with a confirmation resignation letter to your line manager, with a copy to your HR department or equivalent. Obviously if the thought of having this discussion face-to-face worries you a lot then don't do it – just write the letter.  Resignations can be prompted by stress, which might be work related or domestic, or both. Resignations can also be caused by illness and related stresses (see the stress section). People occasionally resign in a fit of rage or as a result of an argument at work. Resignations are not always what they seem, and as a rule the first response of the manager must be to counsel the person resigning to assess the real reasons for the resignation (see conflict resolution and trust). Also the manager should normally notify other departments as required by the organisation's procedures, typically HR/Personnel, and usually your own line boss. If there is a valid and genuine reason for the resignation, you as the manager must then decide what to do about it, if necessary seeking advice from other people in the business (mindful of the need to maintain discretion at all times). If you decide to accept the resignation, check your own organisational policy and follow it. It is important to consider matters from a compassionate standpoint – people have feelings and must be treated with care. In writing acceptance of resignation letters ensure you keep the acceptance positive. There is nothing to gain from being critical or by raking up old issues; moreover you are liable to legal action for defamation if you choose to write anything negative.


From my experience, many employers will look kindly on a request to withdraw a resignation if it is presented in a mature and reasonable manner, if things change and you'd really rather not leave, it's always worth making an attempt to stay. Of course there may be contractual issues, especially if you try to withdraw a resignation after a period of more than a few days. If the organisation has already begun to make other arrangements to fill your job, then it may be difficult for them to reverse things even if they want to. And obviously if the organisation treats the request as an opportunity to reduce your terms, or nail you to some unfair expectations, be very wary. Sometimes there is no going back, and if that's the case for any reason then grit your teeth and drive on.