How to Resign from a Job

Three Methods:Sample ResignationsPreparationTalking to Your Boss

Resigning from your current employer and quitting your job is not something to take on lightly. It can leave you in a tricky position financially. It can also be emotional -- something you might not realize until you actually get in front of your boss to resign. Keep reading for instructions on resigning from your job effectively.

Sample Resignations

Sample Letter of Resignation Template

Sample Resignation Email

Sample Resignation Letter for Retirement

Sample Political Resignation Letter

Sample Email Leaving Job After Bad Situation

Method 1

  1. Image titled Resign from a Job Step 1
    Check your finances. Though you may have a lot of great reasons to quit your job, make sure you are going to be on firm financial footing before you make your decisions final. If you don't have a new job lined up, be prepared to have enough savings to last at least six months—or some other financial resources to ease your period of unemployment. Make a plan of how you are going to budget your savings and any ways you might have to make money until you find another job.
    • Remember that if you quit voluntarily, you are unlikely to receive any unemployment benefits.
  2. Image titled Resign from a Job Step 2
    Start your job hunt. If you can, wait until you have a new, better job lined up before you resign from your current one. This way you won't risk getting stuck in a long period of unemployment when your job search doesn't work out as you hoped. If you can't wait, at least begin looking to see what jobs are out there and how competitive they are going to be.
    • As you start your job hunt, be careful not to let your current job find out you are looking and planning to quit. You will want to have your network put out feelers to help you find a new gig, but only disclose your plans to coworkers you trust to be discreet.
  3. Image titled Resign from a Job Step 3
    Evaluate your current job. Think about why you want to resign and what the pros and cons are. Are there things you can do to eliminate or ameliorate the aspects of the job that bug you? If you are quitting because of money, can you ask for a raise? If you are quitting because of a troublesome coworker, can you ask to be transferred? Consider letting your superiors know how you feel, and give them a chance to improve the situation before you quit.
  4. Image titled Resign from a Job Step 4
    Check your contracts. Revisit any legal documents you signed when joining or working at your current jobs, from non-compete agreements to contracts requiring a certain period of employment from you. Breaking a contract can sometimes have troubling legal and financial consequences. Also check to see how much notice your company requires.
  5. Image titled Resign from a Job Step 5
    Copy over information you don't want to lose. If you have a rolodex or list of contacts that is useful and essential to your line of work, be sure to make a copy of it before you give notice. If it is on company equipment, you may not get a chance once you quit. Just make sure you aren't actually stealing what might be considered trade secrets!

Method 2
Talking to Your Boss

  1. Image titled Resign from a Job Step 6
    Tell your supervisor face to face. Explain that you're leaving the company and ask what you can do to wrap things up before you finish working with them. Follow up in writing with a short email or typed letter if your company requires written notice.
  2. Image titled Resign from a Job Step 7
    Keep your resignation short and sweet. You can give as little or as much information as you like in terms of your new job, the problems that led you to quit, or what you're doing next. Remain cordial.
  3. Image titled Resign from a Job Step 8
    Give your company the required notice. If your contract requires you to give two weeks notice, do so. Don't burn any bridges by quitting suddenly and leaving your boss in the lurch. You might require help (like a reference) from your boss in the future.
  4. Image titled Resign from a Job Step 9
    Follow your boss's requests in informing your coworkers. The company may want to keep your leaving quiet until they have found a replacement or otherwise decided how they are going to fill your position. If you aren't leaving immediately, give them a couple days to sort this out before spreading the news around the office (but only if they ask you to).
  5. Image titled Resign from a Job Step 10
    Don't get senioritis. As you finish up your job, try to remain focused and do everything you can to help your company transition your work to whoever will be doing your job next. It's bad form to phone in your last couple weeks, and doing so might cost you a good reference from your boss that could be helpful in your new job hunt.


  • Keep your emotions in check. Don't let your friendship with your boss make you feel like you're letting them down by quitting. This is business and you need to keep things professional.
  • When you are resigning, some companies may try to offer you a counter offer (a raise, a better title, a bigger office, etc.) to try to keep you employed with the company. Accepting a counter offer isn't necessarily a bad move, but be sure to remember why you wanted to leave the firm in the first place. Don't stay if the counter offer isn't enough to make you happy with your current job.
  • If you used a recruiter to get your new job, ask them for help with your resignation if you are unsure of what to do. They should be able to help.
  • Don't resign in the heat of the moment, take time to consider options and plan your next move. If you decide to resign, give your boss at least a month notice.


  • Some companies will automatically release you the day you give your notice, for security reasons. Be prepared and don't be offended.
  • Make sure your desk and files are up to date in case you are asked to leave immediately.
  • As a hospitality example: Make sure you have kept detailed accounts of everything you bought with your own money (for example: Your knifes for sharing if you are a chef, or if you buy your own cooking wines, or your smaller-sized food preparation gloves for sharing. That way, you won't be accused to stealing when you leave, and would like to take them back for your own use.

Article Info

Categories: Job Loss and Change