What I Learned When I Quit My Job Without Notice

By ControlledXaos | Posted Aug 25 2015 | 6 Comments  


I had another job already landed…but I had to wait on the background check to clear. I’m not one to play my hand in these matters until I know that it’s a sure thing. Everything I read about this particular situation said to not turn in my resignation notice to my current employer because the offer letter for the new job stated “contingent upon background check clearance.”

When I told my prospective employer my availability date, I didn’t know that the background check would take so long, nor did I know a background check would even be a part of the application process. I didn’t have anything really to worry about, but in case I needed to dispute an inaccuracy, I was ready.

So, the background check took over a week to complete and I was stuck in the awkward position of either starting off at the new company later than the availability date I initially gave them or cutting ties with my current company abruptly, essentially without any advanced notice.

I chose to cut the old job short. My previous boss was cool and I liked her, but I had to break the news to her nonetheless. She was disappointed…and the reaction I got from her made me feel like my abrupt resignation was taken personally. I told her I knew I was putting her in a tough position but I was also in one myself.

Now don’t get me wrong, I knew that I had put her on the spot with pressure to fill my position at the last minute. However, I needed to do what was best for me.

I explained the entire situation to her and was told that it was understood…until I explained to her that the job paid more.

Then I was hit with, “Well, other than more money, what is the motivation?”

I said, “The hours are better.”

In return I got, “Well, we could have worked with you on the hours.”

No. Had I done so, she would not have actually come back with a better offer than the new job. We both knew that.

We eventually finished our talk and all was good.

Or so I thought.

Not another word was directly spoken to me by her for the entire day until I turned in my badge and work phone and left the building.

On top of that, even her own boss walked by me 3 times during the day and didn’t say a word either. Did not say “good luck” or “congrats” or anything. I knew some awkwardness was going to occur but this was extreme.

You live you learn. My old job will still be there kicking Monday morning whether I’m there or not. Will I use this company as a reference? Maybe. I got this job without using them (or her) as a reference. I probably would have directed them to her but thankfully I didn’t have to do that. I’m looking forward to this company and a long relationship with them.

Here are some tips for when you know you will be leaving a job:

  • The computer techs will probably make a copy of the files on your company computer. Anything you may have that you don’t want anyone to see…delete. It’s their property after all. Same for any company cell phones.
  • Forward any emails that you may find interesting to your personal account. Usually mail isn’t checked on the way out, it’s checked on the way in. System admins have too much to worry about to track outgoing traffic, in most cases anyway.
  • Get the cell phone numbers and email addresses of your bosses and possibly their bosses. When you leave, you won’t have access to company email anymore. Job applications sometimes ask for email addresses of your references too.
  • If there’s a departmental contact list, make a copy of that too. You can probably use your coworkers as references (and they, you). I wasn’t buddy-buddy with my coworkers (“We are not friends, we just work together”), so I didn’t have their numbers in my phone or social media accounts. But I would give them all glowing reviews if they needed it. It’s hard out there. Plus, if you have any co workers that you were cool with, you could put them on with a job at your new company.
  • If you have any money in your health spending/FSA accounts…drain that stuff. You’ll get a new benefit package at your next company anyway. I used mine to get glasses…condoms are also FSA items, by the way. So stock up and celebrate getting your new job!



About the Author

ControlledXaos is a long time Cypher Avenue reader and contributor.

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6 Comments Feel Free To Join The Cypher.

  1. ControlledXaos | August 25th, 2015

    Nice! Y’all tightened this up an urrythang.

  2. Dre G | August 25th, 2015

    People shouldn’t take others’ business decisions personally.You gotta do what’s best for you.

    Getting contact info is really great advice.It really helps a lot.

  3. IJS | August 25th, 2015

    Good for you! The fact that there were no well wishes just proves that they didn’t deserve you or any courteous acts from you. It’s disgusting how selfish and one sided some companies can be. They expect us to help them mitigate their losses, while they don’t give a care about ours. How many employees have been blindsided and fired, through no fault of their own, without advance notice? Yet, employers believe that they’re entitled to two weeks notice and have the nerve to get upset when circumstances don’t permit it.

  4. thatGuy | August 26th, 2015

    Oh S***, ControllXoas made the feature. Congrats my boi.

  5. JoeBlow | August 30th, 2015

    If you get an offer and provide a start date prior to the completion of the background check, the start date can be adjusted. This sometimes happens and is not a big deal.

    Another thing, quitting with little or no notice is not good and you may take a reputation hit as a result. Always give at least 2 weeks.

  6. samespiritssamebody | October 5th, 2015

    This is great. Awesome. This kind of information should circulate among us as we build for our own and our community. So much of life is about ‘How’ to get something done, ‘how’ to have a conversation, just plain ‘how’ to move your life forward everyday.

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