It’s a tired but true cliché saying,
“When you quit your job, don’t burn your bridges”.
I hear it all the time from a lot of people and it is also advice that I hand out to candidates of mine when speaking to them about leaving their current job.
This is particularly pertinent in a “small country town” like Brisbane where everyone seems to know each other. People often say there is only six degrees of separation between everyone all over the world, well in Brisbane it’s more like 2!
Recently I have had to make the tough decision of leaving the best job I’ve ever had. Optimum consulting has been fantastic to me over the past 2 and half years and has been like a new extended family. A few weeks ago my girlfriend was offered a full-time, permanent teaching position in rural NSW. Both my partner and I grew up on farms in NSW so the thought of being in the country does have some appeal to both of us, even though we will miss the bar, restaurant and café scene of the city!
With both of us being young and at the beginning of our careers we decided to give it a go and as such I had to hand in my resignation.
If ever there was a time when you would think that you could afford yourself the luxury of being selfish and potentially burning bridges, this would be it. Not only am I leaving this job and not going to a competitor, I am moving out of the state and into a rural area.
As Optimum have been so good to me, I couldn’t help but give them as much notice as possible and told them I would finish up whenever was best for the company.
During that difficult conversation with the Managing Director I mentioned that I was interested in pursuing a career in Agribusiness as this fits in with my background and also the degree that I first started back in 2008. After hearing this, the Managing Director said, “my cousin is fairly high up in Agribusiness for a bank, would you like me to give him a call for you?”
As you can imagine, my eyes lit up and I had to try and hide my excitement. I have spent over two years in an industry and a position where networks are key and it’s as much about who you know as it is about what you know but I would never think that my boss in Brisbane would have a family member who could help me get a job in Tamworth!
This just highlighted for me the importance of leaving on a good note. Although I wouldn’t recommend leaving a permanent role with next to no job prospects to go to (as I am doing), I would definitely recommend having an honest discussion with your employer or someone that you have a good relationship with in order to work out a mutually beneficial result.
After all, you never know who is related to whom!
Isaac Dufficy – Senior Consultant