Horizon Search Inc.
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Two Weeks Notice

Many professionals feel uneasy when it’s time to resign from their current position to take a new job. It’s understandable; most of us don’t go through job changes very often, so we’re unfamiliar with what’s considered normal and expected when it comes to how much resignation notice one should give.

It’s natural for relationships to evolve at a company, so you may still have feelings for colleagues, and don’t want to leave them in the lurch.

Two weeks notice is the normal, accepted amount of time that people give, and companies accept, for a resignation notice. Of course, contractual issues may impact this, but it is virtually always better to stick with two weeks if possible.

You may initially say to yourself, “I really need longer than two weeks to transfer everything to my old team.” That may be true.  However, once you give notice, attitudes may shift at your old company:

  • You may be excluded from meetings about future projects and business,
  • The relationships with your coworkers may change,
  • Some at work may be jealous or resentful of your decision,
  • Team members may feel that work is being “dumped” on them, and,
  • Your boss may harbor some anger.

Usually, everything goes smoothly, but the stress of dealing with your departure may bring out the worst in some people, so your final two weeks could be rather unpleasant, maybe even hostile.  There is never a “good” time to leave.

Remember to view your transition from the point of view of your new employer. While you have probably told them how excited you are to be joining the team, extending the transition period may communicate the opposite message.

At the end of the day, the most important thing is to get off to a positive and strong start at your new job. As you’re making decisions about the transition, always keep that in mind.