How To React To The Unexpected Part 2: Resigning Well


Is there a right way to resign and a wrong way, you betya there is.

And like anyone, employees will usually see it from their side.

Let’s take a look at the realities of how an employer feels and acts when it happens.

Hopefully it will help both sides with this type of transition.

We recently had a resignation at pinstripe and while it was a temporary role the “I’m done’ came a tad sooner than expected.

As with most resignations the timing was bad, I was going on leave as well as selling my apartment and business was busy, so one colleague down caused a minor heart fluctuation for yours truly.

That was my initial emotional reaction, one I suspect any employer/manager has, how does this affect me? Not the most constructive response albeit a part of human nature, yep, I know I’m not perfect.

So I put myself into Kirsty coaching, no, self-talk is not a psychological issue!

I stepped away and didn’t respond straight away.

Half a day later I took another look at what she had written: “our working styles are not totally compatible”.

Hmmm, I wonder what she means, so, I asked.

“I am really sorry to see you go, you have done a fantastic job, may I ask in what way you feel our working styles are incompatible as I’d like to make sure I address those areas ongoing”.

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She said “Can you give me a day or so to put down my thoughts” I said, “Of course, I would really appreciate it”.

Long story short, she came back with a very factual and well thought out response. Based on that I took a good solid look at how I manage work-loads and my personal work style, as it clearly doesn’t work for everyone.

Ultimately, her feedback helped me improve the way that I worked with my team:

  • I firmed up my hiring criteria for the next person and included more about how the business runs and myself;
  • I ensured we caught up regularly via SKYPE or phone;
  • I was too hands off, and I need to be more present even with senior colleagues;
  • I increased regular training by way of training videos;
  • I reminded my colleagues regularly of our values and that they could ask me anything and tell me anything – as people forget.

End result, we ended our relationship on a high note, she provided a decent notice period and did a thorough handover, she felt valued and heard and knew I would provide a great reference. I went into my next hiring phase with a much more effective process and improved team management skills.

How one reacts to the unexpected says a lot about you.

For me, the word is constructive.

Get in touch:

Kirsty Ferguson

Founder, International Aviation Coach and Author

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