3 Things To Do When You Leave a Job (Before You Start Your Next One)


Leaving a job can be complicated. You could feel a myriad of conflicting emotions all at once when you leave a job. Whether you’re relieved, mournful, excited or just plain tired, there are a few things you need to do before you say goodbye and move on to your next job. Taking the time to remember these three steps can help you keep a good reference, prepare for your next job search, and feel recharged and ready to take on your next adventure.

Leave Your Job on a Good Note

My first tip may be a difficult one, depending on the circumstances of why you decided to leave a job. If at all possible, you should leave a job on a good note. To find out if this is possible, you need to think about why you’re leaving.

If you’re leaving because of something severe (like workplace harassment), then don’t worry about this. But if you’re leaving because you need more of a challenge, you want a change, or something better popped up, don’t burn the bridge.

By leaving on a good note, you leave the opportunity for your former employer to be a good reference for you. You could stay re-hireable in their eyes in case another position or opening arises. You can also have an easier time maintaining a professional relationship with your now-former coworkers and even boss. You never know when you could benefit from having them still in your professional network. It could be the key to landing your next job or promotion.

Update Your Resume When You Leave a Job

Next, make sure you’re leaving with a clear mind. It can be easy to get swept up in the drama of leaving. But you need to take the time to ensure you’re going to be ready to search for your next job.

I recommend that you take the time to update your resume when you leave a job (if you haven’t already). It’s easier to think about the tasks and skills you use at a job when you’re still doing it. Sometimes, the things you do aren’t obvious to your job title or description. Before you forget, jot everything down. Your time and experience at that job should help you get your next one.

Take a Break Before You Start Again

This last piece of advice can feel uncomfortable. Many people wouldn’t feel comfortable not working for a period of time. But you can decide how long of a break you can afford to take. But trust us. Take a break.

On good terms or not, leaving a job is still a big change. You could need time to process what that means for you moving forward. If you left because you were being overworked or under-appreciated, it’s worth it to take time to remind yourself how valuable you really are.

A good break also gives you a chance to reflect on your experience. What went wrong? What could go better? What do you want in your next job? What needs to change? Jumping from one job to another without thinking about what you want could lead you to ill-fitting jobs over and over.

At the end of the day, you’re in control of your own destiny. Leaving a job isn’t a bad thing. It could be good for your career growth or to just help change things up. No one can make the decision for you, but we hope these tips can help you figure out what you want to do next.

About the Author: Jesi Bolandrina is the Content Marketing Manager at Jobble. As a former gig worker, she knows how hard it can be to feel like you know what you’re doing in an ever-changing workforce. She’s your go-to for news and information from career development, to health and wellness, to finances and more. She curates Jobble’s blog, articles and is the editor of The Everyday Hustle newsletter. If you have any ideas for topics Jobble should cover, let her know.

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