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How To Quit Your Job, According To The Washington Post: Fuck You

Striking French workers in 1936
AFP via Getty Images

It’s the Great Resignation, did you know? Americans are quitting their jobs by the millions; 4.4 million quit just in September alone, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics—some to leap to other, more desirable jobs, but plenty with nothing lined up at all, purely for the sake of quitting. Whole entire industries are short on labor these days, the bosses stumbling around like stupid assholes, palms up, dull eyes even blanker than usual, mewling pathetically to their pals in the press, Weewee peepee weewee, how can I, the poor put-upon MBA shitbrain remora, find someone to make me richer for pennies at the cost of all their dignity and self-respect, as though the concept of offering better compensation and working conditions in order to attract workers is not literally as old as the concept of trading labor for pay. Wild times, man!

Maybe you have been thinking you would like to get in on some of this hot job-quitting action—if you’re anything like the majority of workers in this bleakening dystopian society, you work far too hard for too little pay at the mercy of far-off executive-class creeps who neither value nor recognize your humanity and openly regard you as a fungible inanimate part, and the idea of not having to do that anymore holds no small appeal at this or any other waking moment. Maybe you would quit your job this instant if you felt confident you could cobble together the necessities of life without debasing yourself for another meager paycheck. Maybe you have wondered, “Is there anything I should know about how best to go about quitting my job, to avoid unforeseen bad outcomes beyond simply not having a job for a while?”

The Washington Post, one of our nation’s premier news outlets, is here to help! Reporters Meryl Kornfield and Andrew Van Dam spoke to leading “labor experts” for their advice on how to quit your job; what they’ve taken away from those discussions and happily passed along into print is just about the most hilariously and shamelessly pro-management suite of job-quitting advice imaginable. In total, what the Washington Post wants you to know about your desire to quit your job is that you are a pathetic pea-brained pre-human brute neither fit nor deserving to make decisions for yourself, that your boss is the rightful owner of your labor, and that you would be ashamed of your insolent desire for a better experience of your one life if only you possessed the intellectual or moral capacity to feel anything more complex than fear and profane simian leg-humping greed.

That may be an exaggeration, but not by much. Here is the first of four “tips for how to resign,” according to the Post and the labor experts it consulted on the matter:

1. Before even committing to resigning, there are a few things to reconsider.

Do you really need to resign?

This is the first thing you need to know about how to quit your job: That you’re wrong to even want to. “Employees may underestimate how flexible their bosses or workplaces could be to accommodate their needs, said Tami Simon, who advises companies as the global consulting business leader at Segal, a benefits and human resources consulting firm.” (Emphasis added.) Ah, I see that you want to quit your job. But have you considered that that’s because you’re wrong about what your job is like, you oaf? You fool? I asked someone whose business is helping literally the opposite side of the labor-management relationship from yours what you should do and they said you’re an idiot. “Global consulting business leader.” This is who you turn to for quotes about labor when you consider Count Dracula’s politics insufficiently parasitic.

Before quitting your job, it’s important for you to learn that if you quit this job, you will not have the job anymore:

Simon recommends digging your original offer letter out of the filing cabinet or inbox to remind yourself of your contractual obligations. Did you sign a noncompete agreement? Will you lose a bonus if you go?

She said workers should also look at their compensation agreements and benefits to make sure they know what they could be walking away from.

Many workers are too fucking ignorant to figure out all on their own that when you quit a job, you quit that job, believes the labor expert the Washington Post consulted for advice on how best to quit a job. Before you hand in your resignation, give some thought to the possibility—nay, the certainty—that this will cause your loved ones to go to hell for all time. Have you considered terrifying yourself into abject servility? The person who makes her living helping companies get what they want thinks that would be prudent.

2. Consider how your boss will find out.

If you have decided to leave, don’t tell your co-workers just yet.

Your manager should be the first to find out about your resignation to avoid bungling your relationship with the workplace.

It’s important to remember that your boss is the most important person involved in this decision you make about your life and how you spend every day of it. How will it affect their feelings? There are four things to know in all the world about how to resign from your job, and this is one of them.

Even if your boss is the reason you want to quit, providing the courtesy of first notice gives your employer the chance to figure out how the rest of the organization will find out—and improves your chance of getting a positive reference for prospective employers.

Got that? The wise, flexible, accommodating, nurturing leader, who happily would have given you whatever you wanted had you only had the courage to ask for it instead of deciding to quit like a dirty coward, might vindictively undermine your career prospects for no reason if you do not give them the privilege of control over the flow of news about your own life. Are you suuuuuuure you need to resign?

3. Your letter should be short and sweet.

Sometimes, less is more.

In a resignation letter, you are not required to tell your employer what you’re doing after you leave the company or why you’re moving on—simply your name, a sentence that you’re resigning and your intended last day should suffice.

Airing grievances could backfire, warned said J.T. O’Donnell, a former HR executive and CEO of Work It Daily, a career coaching service.

Your soon-to-be-former boss might torpedo your future job searches if you respect your thoughts and judgments enough to express them in any way, and it will be your fault. (This might be a good thing for the employees of Work It Daily to keep in mind.) You’ve already failed the company by daring to leave; by giving insufficient consideration to how it would make your boss feel; now you expect him to fucking read, too? To learn? To understand how this thing that is happening proceeds from previous things that happened, in a chain of cause and effect that might implicate the boss’s own decisions and actions? Where do you get off! That’s the sort of thing equals do, you pig.

“Your reasons for leaving are personal but not unique,” O’Donnell said.

Ah. So therefore they have no value to anyone. You baby. You filth.

The fourth and final best practice for quitting your job is to continue doing work for the company you want to leave, for the sake of the company you want to leave.

4. Offer to stick around to help with the transition.

The age-old adage is to give two weeks’ notice.

Depending on the level of your job, more time may be necessary to transition your successor effectively.

This blog contains nothing about, like, practical stuff you can do in advance of quitting in order to build up a stockpile of cash to bridge the gap to your next job, or how to arrange healthcare without a job, or services and programs you might avail yourself of in the interim between steady paychecks, or how to calculate what percentage of your existing income you can afford to lose if you decide to take a lower-paying next job for the sake of greater flexibility or personal fulfillment. Nothing from “labor experts” about how to turn your personal desire to quit into the sort of thing that might become a transformative labor action, or safe ways to gauge your coworkers’ interest in quitting and starting something new together without fear of reprisal from management. Nothing, that is, about how to make quitting your job safe or beneficial or restorative for you, the person who is quitting their job.

But it’s important to make sure that the company you are leaving because you want to leave it is able to “transition your successor effectively”! That is your responsibility, according to the Washington Post. There are four things to know about quitting a job that are important enough to rise to the level of publication in one of the nation’s premier news outlets, and one of them is that you should stick around at the job you want to leave until such time as you have ensured that the company will not even register your having departed.

O’Donnell recommends having that conversation with your manager to figure out what time you can accommodate with your schedule. Offering extra help with the transition, including providing a document to guide your replacement, is one way to ensure you leave on a positive note.

The CEO recommends deferring to management on the subject of what you should do with your own one life.

“Take the high road,” O’Donnell said. “Because reference checks will come back to get you, five, ten, fifteen years later.”

Nice future you got there. Be a real shame if somebody haunted it like a vengeful ghost, destroying your attempts at exchanging your labors for a personal livelihood, because you declined to make your exit as easy for them as they’d like.

Who are these clowns, anyway? I see a consultant ghoul and a CEO; what on earth would make them experts on how to quit jobs? They don’t even have jobs. I’m an expert on job quitting! I’ve done it repeatedly! At least once with enough flair to get it covered in the New York Times, a newspaper even fancier than the Post. In my expert opinion, the thing to know about quitting your job is: Quit your fucking job.