15 Things To Do When Leaving Your Job

Did you hear about the crazy lady that stabbed her HR rep with a pen while resigning?  This actually happened last week.  Now, it probably goes without saying for MOST people that you shouldn’t do that.  But what should you do when leaving your job?  Well, here are some tips to get started so that leaving your job is a positive experience for everybody.

Give Notice

I’m a firm believer that you should offer two weeks notice before leaving your job.  Technically you don’t have to, but it shows you’re a team player.  You can technically quit and be done that day, but it’s just bad form.  Make sure you give proper notice.

Train Your Replacement (Or Document)

Someone will likely have to do your job. This might be a permanent replacement or someone that fills in.  Either way, make sure they know what you do.  If you know the person taking over, sit down with them.  If the company plans on hiring someone after you leave, then write out a document and give it to your manager.

Tell People Respectfully

Chances are you’ll want to let your co-workers know what’s going on. Make sure you do so respectfully.  And, if your employer asks that you don’t tell people, be considerate of that request.

Be A Good Employee

Make sure you’re providing value to the company until the end.  If you’re staying for two weeks, work for two weeks.  You’re going to expect that full paycheck, so give your employer their proper return.  Don’t slack off for the last two weeks.  It’s disrespectful toward your employer as well as your fellow co-workers.

Clean Things Up

Depending on how long you’ve been around, you might have a lot to clean up.  Clean your desk.  Make sure your file drawers are cleaned.  Run through your e-mail.  Get things in order.  Just make sure you don’t go too far and discard something that will be needed by your replacement.

Give Honest Feedback

When you provide your intention to leave, you’ll likely be asked why.  Give honest feedback.  But stay respectful.  For example, if you’re leaving for more money, don’t say: “You’re not paying me enough.”  Instead say, “I got an offer with a salary that I just couldn’t pass up.”  Both get the message across, one way more professionally than the other.

Share Contact Information

If you want to stay in touch with co-workers or managers, share contact information.  Run through your LinkedIn contacts and make sure to add people.

Follow Up On HR Issues

Make sure you understand everything that will and won’t happen once you leave.  How are your benefits handled? What happens to your retirement accounts? Are you getting paid for unused time off?  HR will give you higher priority before you leave versus afterward.  Have everything handled accordingly.

Turn Everything Over

Make sure you know what you’re supposed to have turned over and do so.  Laptops, cell phones, badges and other company items are big ones, but return everything that’s expected.

Understand The Money Aspects

Be prepared with how everything will go from a financial perspective.  Will your last paycheck be deposited or sent in the mail?  Are you all caught up on your expense accounts and reimbursements?

Be Gracious

If you’re moving to bigger and better things, don’t be a jerk about it.  It’s not cool.  Plus, you never know for sure how things are going to work out.  You never know when you might need to come back.  Don’t burn any bridges.

Thank People

Chances are there are people at your company that have helped you.  Make sure to personally thank them.  They are a part of the reason you’re now getting a new opportunity.  Let them know you recognize and appreciate them.

Update Your Resume

Make sure your resume has an updated end date.  Validate your responsibilities.  Make room for what you’ll add at your new employer.

Update Your LinkedIn Profile

Since LinkedIn is the online resume spot these days, keep this updated as well.  Note that you left your job and put details for your new employer in your profile.

Say Goodbye With A Smile

When you’re riding off into the sunset, make sure the last impression people have is a good one.  Leave with a smile on your face and a wave goodbye.  First impressions matter.  But last impressions make a difference, too.

Readers, do you make an effort to leave jobs on a good note?  Have you ever heard of any horror stories of job exits gone wrong?  Please share in the comments below.  Thanks for reading.

 

 

Copyright 2017 Original content authorized only to appear on Money Beagle. Please subscribe via RSS, follow me on Twitter, Facebook, or receive e-mail updates. Thank you for reading.

20 Job Interview Red Flags

Are you interviewing for a new job?  If so, congrats on the new opportunity!  However, as everyone knows, not every job is perfect.  But, how do you determine what might actually not be the best job?  Sometimes, an interview can provide some great insight.  Here are some job interview red flags that I’ve experienced and heard over the years.

Job Requirements and Such

  • Nights & Weekends.  If these words come up at all, it’s a safe bet you might be expected to work off shift.
  • On call.  Are you expecting to be on call?  If so, great, but if not, watch out if this comes up at all.  You’ll likely find yourself on call sooner rather than later.
  • Filling In.  If you suddenly start talking about items beyond the job description, and how you’d be filling in, watch out.  This could be a permanent or way too regular thing.
  • Short Staffed.  If the words come up at all, watch out!  When they tell you in a job interview that they’re short staffed, they are probably always short staffed.
  • Mismatch from the job description.  If the job description differs from what they talk about in the interview, watch out.  My friend hired in for a job where the travel time was listed at 25%.  During the interview, they said it could occasionally be 50-75%.  Well, of course it was 50-75% all the time.
  • Learning a job on the fly.  I was hired for a job where I didn’t qualify.  But, they assured me that my background would make me a quick fit after I was mentored for a few months.  Then, after I was hired, the mentoring shrunk to a week.  It was doomed for failure from day one.

Compensation Issues

  • Introductory salary.  If you are promised a big raise after working there for so long, be careful.  Often, something comes up or they’ll find an excuse to get rid of you before awarding the raise.
  • Delayed benefits. If a company doesn’t want to give you benefits from the start, be careful.
  • Deflection to non-monetary benefits.  Some companies love to talk about the great rewards they provide beyond salary.  If they are trying to sell this as a way to offer less, look out.  After all, the free snacks in the lunchroom aren’t going to pay your bills, are they?

Interview Experience

  • Starting late. It’s poor etiquette to show up to a job interview late, right?  It’s also just as poor if you are brought in late.  Respect is a two way street.
  • Not answering questions.  You’re supposed to ask questions about the company and the job.  They should answer them.  If you’re getting the runaround, listen to the warning bells.
  • Interviewing from a list.  I believe that every job interview should be unique.  An interview feels comfortable to me when it flows based on the conversation.  I find it very off-putting when an interviewer is clearly running their way down a list of questions.  It feels as if they have no interest in getting to know you as an individual.
  • Not paying attention.  Have you ever had an interview where the person interviewing you was clearly distracted?  Again, a big red flag should wave here as it demonstrates a clear lack of respect.
  • Interviewing with other candidates.  I don’t want to sit alongside my competition.  Ever.  If this were ever to happen, I would decline the interview.
  • Anything off color.  Breaking the ice during an interview can help calm nerves.  But, anything off color is a no-no.  If any of that comes up, walk, don’t run, away from that job.

Culture

  • Stressed out looking people.  When you’re walking around or waiting to be called in, pay attention.  Are people happy looking or do they appear stressed out?  Do people look conversational or confrontational?  Getting a feel for how existing employees appear is huge.
  • Talking someone down.  Just as you should never bad-mouth your current employer or boss, nor should you hear anybody being talked about during your interview.  It’s unprofessional, and you know they’re probably talking about everyone.  Which would, of course, one day be you if you’re hired.
  • Political.  If politics comes up at all during an interview, be careful.  Unless you’re interviewing for a position in politics, there is no good reason for this to come up.
  • Turnover.  If it comes up that there’s a lot of turnover, this is a clear sign of problems.
  • The ‘forever’ club.  If it comes up that everyone else on the team has worked there for a long time, dig into that.  Many times a new hire, no matter how qualified, will be kept at arm’s length.  A good mix of experience on the team isn’t required, but can help.

These are some job interview red flags.  Some might apply and some might not.  You have to be the judge on whether they do an if they’re important.  What are some red flags you’ve used (or missed) during the job interview process?

Copyright 2017 Original content authorized only to appear on Money Beagle. Please subscribe via RSS, follow me on Twitter, Facebook, or receive e-mail updates. Thank you for reading.

Have You Observed Gender Equality During Your Career?

The recent women’s marches across the country got me thinking.  They seemed to originate from Donald Trump being inaugurated President, but were tied to a number of different issues.  One of the issues that I heard mentioned several times was ‘equal pay’.  It’s been well documented that women often receive less pay than do men for the same job.  This gap has narrowed over time but still exists.  The marches got me thinking about my personal experience in this area.  I’d like to share my personal experiences with gender equality in the workplace, and I’d love to hear your experiences in the comments.

There Is Inequality In My Field (But With A Catch)

I’ll start off by saying that I know that there is a big skew in my field.  I work in IT, and it’s always been that more men than women are employed in the IT profession.  So, looking at sheer numbers doesn’t really give a fair comparison.

I will say that I’ve worked with some amazing women throughout my career.  Just a few examples of the great colleagues I’ve had:

  • One woman ran the entire web design area of the company when companies were first developing their online presence.  She was fully responsible for developing many companies first appearance in the digital world.  I learned a lot about drive and motivation working with her.
  • I’ve always been praised for my communication skills.  I’ve been able to work well with technical teams, but also very well with people who aren’t technical at all.  This skill has a lot to do withone woman that I worked with at my first job outside of college.  I started off on a technical help desk, and the woman sitting next to me had a great ability to work with customers.  I picked up a lot from her and morphed a lot of what I learned into my own style.  My communication skills help me to this day, and I know that my random desk assignment next to this awesome woman is a big key.
  • My current cube-mate is a great woman who teaches me new stuff every day.  She’s been in the profession for 15 years longer than I have, and is an expert in our online tools.  Any time anybody has a question about this particular tool, they come to her.

Gender Equality In Management

My dad told me a story that I think is crazy, but I know it’s true.  Someone he was close with once worked side by side with a woman.  When a management position became available, they both vied for it.  When the woman got the promotion, his colleague was so incensed that he quit.

That’s right, he actually left a job because he couldn’t take the thought of having to work for a woman.

The only type of glass ceiling we should see.
Image from morguefile courtesy krosseel

This was a long time ago, probably back in the 1970’s or thereabouts, and while I’d like to think that this was more a sign of those times, you have to wonder how much of that exists today.  It’d be nice to say ‘none’ but even 40 more years isn’t all that much time.

For this post, I sat down and looked at my experience with my managers.  In the roughly 20 years in my professional career, I’ve had 13 managers (when we’ve both been in our position for six months or more).  The breakdown is:

  • 7 women manager, 6 male managers
  • Approximately 10 years under each

It doesn’t get much more equal than that.

I’ve had some great managers and some awful managers across both genders.  There’s not one particular gender that I prefer or that prefers me, if I look at things objectively.

I’m Lucky

I think that I’ve been pretty lucky as to my experience.  I never really sat down and thought about the numbers I just listed.  For me, I’ve just looked at each experience as part of my career.  But, to realize that I’ve had equal management opportunity both genders shows that I really haven’t seen inequality.  I would say that I’ve seen fairly equal gender opportunities during my time.

I also know that I’m very lucky to have been able to say that.

What Are Your Experiences On Gender Equality In The Workplace?

I would really love to see what the experiences of others are out there.  Have you had both male and female managers?  If you’ve been promoted, what are your experiences?  I’d love to hear from both men and women.  Please let me know your experiences and any thoughts in the comments below.

Copyright 2017 Original content authorized only to appear on Money Beagle. Please subscribe via RSS, follow me on Twitter, Facebook, or receive e-mail updates. Thank you for reading.

11 Ways To Have A Bad Job Interview

Looking for a job is not a fun process, at least to most.  It’s often stressful, frustrating, and can have many ups and downs.  I’m very grateful that I’ve had my for over ten years as the number of interviews I’ve had has been pretty small.  There are a lot of things you want to do to improve your chances of getting your dream job.  Additionally, there are things to avoid.  Here are some of those things you want to make sure NOT to do so that you don’t have a bad job interview.

Show Up Late

First impressions are everything, and if you’re not there on time to give your first impression, you’re in trouble.  People interviewing for a job usually have a tight schedule.  If you show up late, that is seen as very disrespectful and can be very disruptive.

Show Up Too Early

The best way to avoid being late is to show up really early.  But, if you stroll in too early, I think that can be just as bad.  Nobody is going to want you sitting around for half an hour before you’re supposed to be there.  Chances are the person doing your interview won’t have time to see you early.  So, while it makes sense to arrive with plenty of time to spare, make sure you sit in your car.

Skip Your Homework Assignment

Any time you go for a job interview, you should have detailed knowledge about the job as well as the company itself.  Making sure you know the job description is on you, as is understanding the basics about the company you are applying to work for.  If you try to wing it, the person interviewing you will probably think you’re not very serious about the position.

Look Unprofessional

If you don’t look professional, chances are people won’t think you’re able to do professional work.  Showing up to a job interview under dressed, poorly groomed, with dirty clothes, or smelling of body odor or cigarette smoke is going to score you zero points.  Make sure to look the part.

Crack Jokes

If you find a punchline in everything, chances are you have a great time in life.  That’s all fine, except you’ll probably want to scale it back for an interview.  As funny as you are, it’s not a requirement for most jobs, and so people doing interview will probably not appreciate your humor.  If you get the job, you can lighten the atmosphere with your repertoire of knock-knock jokes, but keep it in check until then.

Get Someone’s Name Wrong

If you’re introduced to someone, it’s a good idea to refer to them by name.  Just make sure it’s the right one.  This goes especially for anyone that’s doing your interview.  Many will laugh it off, but it still sticks in the back of their head that your attention to detail is lacking.

Babble

People doing interviews want to find applicants who are qualified for the job.  Speaking for two minutes on an answer that could have been given in thirty seconds will not help you.  It will likely hurt you.  While you don’t want to give one word answers, make sure to stick to the point.

Ask Dumb Questions (Or None At All)

You’ll likely be given a chance to ask some questions about the position.  Don’t ask questions just to fill the time.  Also, don’t ask complex questions.   Make sure you come with a list of thoughtful questions that the person interviewing can answer.  You want your questions to show your interest in the job.

Bring Up Money Or Benefits

This is a huge red flag.  An applicant should not bring up money, vacation time, health care, or anything else along those lines.  If they’re brought up into the conversation, it should be done so by the person conducting the interview.  If you’re interviewed and bringing this up, it reflects very poorly on you.  Don’t do it.

Lie

Lying is about one of the worst things that you can do in an interview. A person conducting an interview knows how to read people and body language, so they’ll often be able to spot a lie.  Even if you get away with it in the interview, it’ll likely come about at some point.  After all, if it’s being asked in the interview, chances are it’s important.  Lying is guaranteed to cause you trouble sooner or later.  Don’t do it, ever.

Forget A Thank You

At the end of an interview, you want to shake hands, look the person doing the interview in the eye, and thank them for their time.  This is a given.  You also need to make sure to thank them for their time afterward, whether it be through an e-mail, letter, or phone call.  It may seem like an old fashioned practice, but nonetheless, if you forget it, you could end up blowing an otherwise perfect interview.

Recovering From A Bad Job Interview Is Hard

If you make one or more of these mistakes, it can often be difficult or impossible to recover.  With many jobs attracting many more candidates than there are positions, so chances are someone else won’t make the same mistakes.  The best thing to do if you found that you’ve messed up is to continue on, and if the situation calls for it, apologize.  But the best piece of advice is try to avoid having a bad job interview in the first place.  I hope that these tips have helped.

Readers, have you ever had a bad job interview?  What happened?  Did you recover or did you know it was over?  Let me know in the comments below.

Copyright 2017 Original content authorized only to appear on Money Beagle. Please subscribe via RSS, follow me on Twitter, Facebook, or receive e-mail updates. Thank you for reading.