Monday, August 09, 2010
How not to write a resignation letter
When quitting a job that one hates, it can be tempting to write a nasty resignation letter. This one, posted on Why We Need HR, listed off a slew of offences committed by the company.

    My decision to leave the company was not made in haste. There are many contributing factors that have led to my resignation. ...

    Our publications are so inflated with brochures that no reader would realistically read it in its entirety. But that seems to be okay with everyone. In fact, it’s a running joke that no one reads the magazines. As a writer, you can imagine why this is inherently offensive. ...

    It often puzzled me why an Editor in Chief wouldn’t get on board with a passion for quality, but it is apparent, Lisa, that your editing skills are quite basic (e.g. missing commas, uncertainty of semicolon and em-dash rules). As for management, you have not demonstrated leadership; you have shown what it is to be a ‘yes’ person. ...

The letter also includes grievances of harassment:

    The lack of boundaries within the company is staggering. Policies are wholly ineffective when the president is the guiltiest and the least accountable to following them. I’m referring to you, Brutus, and your continued belief that the office is your personal playground. Unsolicited comments about women’s attire, sexual innuendos, unwelcome touching, and invasion of personal space are a few examples. ...

    To be clear, when I said I believed in Magazine C, I wasn’t lying. I still believe that the magazine has potential, especially in light of the digital age. The difference is I no longer believe it will result in anything valuable under the current business model and the current management. ...

    My resignation is effective today. I know two weeks is a standard professional courtesy, but I don’t feel the need to extend something that wasn’t offered to me. ...

Read the full letter here.

As much as you may want to write a letter like this, I very strongly urge you to think very long and very hard before you do.

The Canadian publishing industry is incredibly small, and you never know who your boss knows. Burning a bridge like this could result in many other burned bridges. Beware that you may be cutting yourself off from future opportunities.

It also can have some unforseen consequences. As the author of the blog learned, some of her ex-coworkers were starting to feel the heat.

For issues such as harassment, seek legal avenues such a labour board complaints. Write that nasty resignation letter if you must; just think twice before you submit it to your boss.
- Corinna vanGerwen
About Me
Corinna vanGerwen


Corinna vanGerwen is a freelance editor and writer. She has worked as senior editor at Style at Home, senior design editor at Cottage Life and is the former Canadian Director of Ed2010. She has also held the position of operations manager at a boutique PR agency, where she handled strategic planning and daily operations.

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Thank you, Alicia!...
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