The worst ways to leave your developer job

Whether you tire of your current job or find a better opportunity, leaving shouldn’t be an intimidating concept. There is both a right and a wrong way to resign—and as with most things in life, it’s far easier to fail than to succeed.

Even if you’re already leaving, how you resign can have lasting (and potentially disastrous) effects on your future career, as 86 percent of HR managers believe. When you finally make the decision, be careful not to fall into these resigning blunders.

“I quit! Eff your company and everyone who works in it!”

Your boss hates you, your hours are inhuman, your pay is meager, and your company has no idea what you do as a developer. It’s tempting to tell your company exactly how you feel and storm out the front door like a diva.

By far, burning bridges is the most common trap that resigning employees can fall into. Based on “Saying Goodbye: The Nature, Causes, and Consequences of Employee Resignation Styles” by Anthony C. Klotz and Mark C. Bolino, ten percent of employees chose to resign in a hostile manner, ranking third out of seven resignation styles behind two proper ways of resigning.

Regardless of how dismal your software development career has been under your current company, burning bridges is never the right way to go. Attacking your employers as you resign can leave your future career in shambles.

The software development industry is not as big as you might think. It’s still highly likely that you’ll eventually meet your former (and now scorned) employers once again. Likewise, word can get around fast about how you left your former job.

Yes, companies near you can refuse you employment based on how you left your former job, according to John Sonmez, author of The Complete Software Developer’s Career Guide.

“I’ll leave for lunch and never come back!”

Like shutting down a program, quitting isn’t just pressing “x” and leaving without a word. You have to make sure that things are in tip-top shape before you leave. Leaving unfinished work is tantamount to damaging the company from the inside. Causing a company to panic and salvage what’s left of your unfinished code leaves a lasting impression on your career as a developer.

This is especially true for developers. Your job isn’t something that can be quickly picked up by another developer. Your work is unfamiliar. Sometimes, your project might even have to be scrapped so they can start again. More than damaging the company, you might even make an enemy out of a fellow developer.

It’s tempting to damage a toxic company, but doing so will leave the same lasting mark as if you left in a hostile manner. If your future employers find out that you left your former job without a trace, nothing will stop them from assuming that you’ll do the same to them.

Not to mention, that leaving unfinished business is wholly unprofessional.

“I’m finalizing a rockstar deal with this company that’s way bigger than yours.”

Never boast of your future plans.

While you might be elated that you bagged an amazing contract with a better company, it’s unprofessional to brag about it to your current boss. This minimizes your current job as just a stepping stone. Especially in a smaller startup environment, this can foment resentment towards you as an ingrate. Again, never give your former company any reason to hate you.

Regardless of how the quality of your job deteriorated, it still helped boost your career. Remember, you said yes to the job before for a reason.

“I’ll do the bare minimum so they’ll just fire me.”

In a job interview, “resigning” is a more advantageous term than “fired.” Being fired means that you didn’t leave on your own terms. As a job seeker, this casts an indelible mark on your resume, especially if it’s because of your performance.

Even if your firing was out of your control (if the company was downsizing, for example), your future employers might go out of their way to do additional research and reference checking to see how you did in a past job.

Further, the courtesy of giving your resignation notice entitles you to severance compensation when you finish your contract. Quitting or being fired negates the likelihood that you’ll get a single penny for your troubles.

If you’ve already made the decision to resign, give notice and keep doing your best until your final day. This includes finishing your projects, training your replacement developers, and transitioning your API to them. This may extend to more than a courtesy, though, as some employee contracts do include some stipulations when you resign.

According to Scott Moss, a professor of employment law at Marquette University, refusing to even train your replacement may be grounds to withhold your severance compensation or even to terminate you prematurely.

The golden rule of resigning your job is to leave without any ill will. Don’t give your company any cause to lash back at you in the future. Life is to short and the world is too small to deal with avoidable grudges.

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Published at Mon, 24 Jul 2017 09:46:12 +0000