William Shakespeare said that "Parting is such sweet sorrow", and Sheryl Sandberg said "don't leave until you leave." And for me it comes down to that jet stream (or wake) again, do you want it to be a beautiful memory, to fade quickly or to leave a stain?

As important as the first day is for companies to get right, with effective inductions and warm receptions, that last month post resignation, is when the employee becomes re employable, or a bad penny!

Whether your resignation is a surprise to the company or not, make sure you know all the conditions of termination before you resign, or commit to your new company.

Some items that can create issues around your departure are

Resignation period

  • Calendar month or 30 days
Training investment

  • Do you have to pay it back

  • Will your final pay cheque cover all outstanding amounts
Holiday Leave in your last month that you have already booked

  • Many companies do not allow leave in your final month, and you might find yourself losing deposits on accommodation and travel costs
Critical project hand overs

Final pay day

  • There could be a standard policy to pay all departing employees on the last work day of the month and you need to consider this in terms of debit orders and house payments
Bonuses and Incentives

  • These might be linked to a completed period of work
Commissions Outstanding

  • There might be conditions attached to paying out commission after termination of employment
Provident / Pension funds

  • These take time to pay out, and there is paper work to complete
Do remember that it is not only your line manager that is going to give you a reference. 5 years down the line you might be applying for a position, only to find that the decision maker is the colleague you left holding the baby on a big project, at a previous employer. And, even more important, you might not like your new job, and might need a good reference, or even your old position back.

When I joined Accsys, I was lucky enough to know 4 board members of the holding company, 3 from my very first job at NCR. They asked me to consider joining the company, put me through a series of personality tests and profiling, which confirmed my alignment with the values and objectives of the group, but all could have been lost if I had burned bridges over 20 years before!

Build great relationships in your last month - focus on leaving a positive jet stream behind you, you will never regret it.

Edited – First Published Google + February, 2014

Links and References