Things are not going well at work and your boss eventually asks you to resign. You begin to weigh your options and determine that you can either resign and leave or refuse and risk being terminated which may affect your ability to secure other employment. If you choose to resign, the first thing you need to do is resist the temptation to depart right away. There are certain things you can do before you resign to lessen the blow it is to you and put you in a better position to move forward with your life.
1. Discuss the reason for the request
Most times when an employee is asked to resign it is not a mystery regarding why the request was made. But sometimes a request to resign is made and it seems out of the blue and it is not immediately known what has caused it. If you have been asked by management to resign and you do not know why, make some inquiries. Ask if it was due to your performance or behaviour.
If you are satisfied with the answer that you get, at least you can resign and use the feedback you receive to succeed in future positions. If you do not like the reason, you are in a position to negotiate a different reason that will be reflected in your personnel file and you will be able to give this reason to future employers as to why you left your last job. Get this reason that you negotiated in writing to use in case inquiries are made by prospective employers.
If an employer is asking for your resignation, you are in a great position to negotiate the terms of your departure especially if you are in the middle of a contract or have years of service. Before tendering your resignation, make some inquiries regarding what benefits and compensation you are entitled to. You are probably owed payments in lieu of unused vacation and sick time as well. If an employer is very insistent that you resign, you may also be able to demand a severance package.
These are all questions that you must pose to your employer before resignation to make sure you are well-compensated. If you could have been terminated with cause, your employer would have taken this route to avoid you having the opportunity to make demands of them. As a result, you do have some pull and can probably make some inquiries that will benefit you as you leave your position.
3. Save work samples
If you choose to resign you will obviously be looking for a new position shortly thereafter. While it is possible to be hired on experience and merit alone, it would help to be able to show examples of your previous work at job interviews. Before resigning and departing the workplace, attempt to obtain some of the work you have done by forwarding material via email to be saved on a personal computer or saving it to a CD or USB drive.
Certainly you should not be taking anything that has confidential information on it but you want to be able to show prospective employers that you can fill their vacant position and do the job well. Be mindful of what you choose to take with you as any material that could be perceived as stolen will not put you in a good position to obtain employment.
4. Hire attorney
Tendering a resignation may result in you being unemployed for a period of time and cause you stress as you think about paying bills, mortgages, and personal expenses. As a result you want to make sure that you receive compensation that you need and are entitled to. Before officially resigning, you should consider hiring an employment lawyer. This attorney can help you explore your rights and represent your interests when dealing with the employer. He or she can negotiate terms of the resignation and play a role in drafting a severance package that will meet your needs.