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Exit Strategy

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Need an exit strategy from your current job? On a collision course with your current workplace culture? How about a boss whose strategies and approaches you don't support? You may need an exit strategy. You can plan your own exit strategy or ask your company to help you create an exit strategy. Sometimes an exit strategy is essential to cut your losses or to remove yourself from a mismatched work environment.

An exit strategy is a way to remove yourself from a current situation. Your goal is removal without losing face or burning relationship bridges with, for example, your current employer.

Whatever your reason, you need an exit strategy. You've decided that leaving your current employer by quitting your job is the answer. You've done what you can to make your current job work. Maybe the lack of job fit or cultural fit is so glaring that you fear the long road to termination is about to begin.

You know that your employer hates to fire employees and that the termination process is arduous and lengthy. Your employer needs to establish cause and avoids any hint of discrimination. So, an exit strategy might appeal to your employer, too. No lawsuits. No acrimony. Unwanted employee gone. Get over your hesitation. An exit strategy may be the best path for both you and your employer.

You're a smart employee. You can read the small signals in your workplace. You didn't get a raise. Employees are complaining about you. The one-on-one's with your manager are increasing and growing increasingly focused on performance expectations and problems. You've checked out the signs to look for when employment termination is nigh.

Sample Exit Strategies

You can create your own exit strategy. Ways to quit your job that will help you save face and move into a successful future include:

  • Search for a new job while you are still employed. Give notice when you accept a new job.

  • Ask your employer if you can work part-time or a reduced schedule while you look for a new job.

  • Transfer out of your current department if the company and culture are a good fit, but your immediate environment is not. Exercise this exit strategy before your relationship with your company is beyond repair.

  • Ask your manager to discuss an exit strategy with you. No matter the reason, if your job is not working out, perhaps your organization will work with you to pave your way out the door. No hard feelings; it just didn't work out. If you’re this unhappy, your company may be, too. Perhaps the company will work with you to create an exit strategy that buys out your contract or provides severance in return for termination of the employment relationship.

  • You can also agree, as an exit strategy, on a reasonable time to exit your company. At the end of a project, on completion of a campaign, with the hire of a new employee, and when the company experiences the loss of a customer are examples of timed occasions to implement an exit strategy. Your company no longer needs your skills, has determined that you are a poor fit, or has nothing available when a project is completed. If you agree, you can agree on an exit strategy, that again, might involve a severance package.

Whatever exit strategy you pursue, time your employment termination to occur before relationships are irreparably damaged.

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Also Known As: exit plan
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