How to Resign A Hostile Job Without Burning Bridges

Resigning from a job is one of the hardest things to do.

Mainly, if the company is not willing to let you go it can be more challenging to leave.

Remember, you have to be polite and courteous and leave in a pleasant manner.

Even if you are resigning because of frustration and overload of work, you should leave the office on good terms.

How you quit can impact your next employability and references too.

Therefore, you have to be very careful in this regard.

For those who are resigning due to a hostile work environment, we have come up with some helpful tips.

And if you want to quit without burning bridges, we have got you covered.

1. Find a Suitable Time

The selection of the right time is crucial.

You cannot quit in the middle of some critical business project.

It is ethically wrong too.

Make sure you finish all your tasks and nothing is pending on your side when you leave the job.

2. Talk to your Boss First

Usually the boss calls you to his office when he receives your resignation letter.

But before sending a letter, you should schedule a meeting with your boss.

In this way, you will get a chance to make things clear and explain the multiple reasons for quitting.

Once you discuss this with him you can hand over the resignation letter as it will not shock him.

On the contrary, if you talk to other colleagues about resigning and the words get to the boss, it will surely make him angry.


Besides, if he gets your resignation without any prior explanation, he might think that you are being rude.

Therefore you should be decent in your actions and tell him first before talking about it with any other employee.

3. Give Notice

If you have planned to change your job, you should not leave the past company in the lurch.

Professionalism demands you to inform the company about your intentions to go at least two weeks before.

You should talk to your new employer that it would take a week or two for handing over the documents and ongoing project details.

It will also reflect your professional attitude and leave a good impact on them.

4. Draft your Resigning Letter

Draft a professional resignation letter.

Although it is an older method, still you should go for it to let the boss know you are resigning.

It’s entirely your choice whether you want to submit a hand-written letter or you prefer to send it via email.

Be careful in your selection of words and be sure to communicate the situation wisely to the employer.

5. Get Ready for Face to Face Discussion

Keep in mind that when you send your resignation letter to the boss he will most probably call you to his office for discussing the letter.

Often the companies don’t want their old staff to leave and try their best to retain their employees by resolving the issues if possible.

You should prepare yourself to address each and every point mentioned in your letter.

This meeting will also show that you are trying to end things on friendly terms.

At the end of your discussion, you must thank him and tell the supervisor that you will transfer all the data and knowledge regarding the current projects.

6. Identify your Priorities

If you have found a better opportunity, it’s your choice whether to accept their offer letter before talking to your existing employer or not.

If you have no counter job offer, it would be a bad idea to quit.

They might not be in a position to make increments, and you might end up empty-handed.

The point is you should determine what you actually want.

Be honest with yourself, and if you are not content with your present job, you should make a smooth switch to a better alternative.

7. Offer Training to Your Replacement

Once you have decided you are going to leave, make sure you thank your employer before going and tell him that you have had a great time and an excellent working experience with the firm.

Even if you are not pleased with the company’s policies and attitude of the boss, you should be courteous and fulfill the formality of thanking him.

If possible, offer to train your replacement so that the company doesn’t keep any harsh feelings for you.

Bonus Tip #1 – Drafting a Good Resignation Letter

The letter of resignation should not be very long.

It is better to keep it to the point and concise, and you should write in a professional manner.

While writing, remember that your primary objective to draft a letter is to inform the boss that you are going to leave your job.

It must include your designation and the effective date.

Moreover, it is better to remain in a gracious tone, and you should always thank the company for giving you the opportunity to work in an excellent learning environment.

Remember not to include the extensive details about the reasons why you are quitting.

Restrain from listing down the frustrations as it can burn the bridges with your boss as you have no idea how many connections he has in the job market.

Therefore, you should always leave on friendly terms despite a bad job experience.

Bonus Tip #2 – Don’t Be Rude

Even if you are resigning due to a hostile work environment, you should follow a proper code of conduct.

Your conversation with the boss should not include any ultimatums or threats from your side.

For instance, you are not supposed to say that you need an extra holiday or instant raise in salary if they want to retain you.

That’s the wrong approach.

Besides, you should not blame the company.

Keep all your destructive criticisms to yourself, don’t speak ill of the company.

Never do that as it can potentially ruin your reputation for future employability.

Just give personal reasons, for instance, you need a break or you are moving out of town.

Moreover, you can say that you want to enhance your exposure and therefore, you are switching the job.

It would be better if you prefer to focus on the future instead of dwelling on past issues.

It is of no use to play the blame game.

Once you have decided to leave the job, it is better not to have bitter conversations at your last meeting.

Bonus Tip #3 – Remain in touch

You should remain in the good books of your ex-boss and colleagues.

These contacts can later prove to be helpful to you.

Therefore, even if you don’t like them you should be in touch after joining your next job.


Once you decide to resign, make sure you do it nicely.

It is essential that you follow the formal procedure as per the company rules.

Besides, you should avoid trash talking.

Always notify the company in advance so that they can manage your replacement and provide training to him/her if necessary.

Be thankful to the boss and keep in touch with other employees 🙂

Have you left your job or are you in any difficult positions about leaving? We welcome all your comments below!

4 thoughts on “How to Resign A Hostile Job Without Burning Bridges”

  1. Great advice Brandon. It is always best to leave any job in a gracious way as you never know what the future will bring.

    I left my old job because I didn’t feel that I was appreciated for the time and effort that I was required to put in, which was above and beyond my job description. When I resigned, I left on a positive note and thanked my boss for the experience, even though I didn’t really feel appreciated .

    This was a lucky stoke because unbeknownst to me, my old boss recently bought out the new company that I am currently working for.

    • That reminds me of this meme I saw.

      It said: “there’s this thing at work, where if I do my job really well I get to do someone else’s job.”

      Going above and beyond and you will get taken advantage of.

      And wow, that’s so crazy that your old boss bought the new company you’re in! I hope all is going well there 🙂

  2. Hey, great tips! I’ve resigned a few times now .. it’s never super comfortable, but there are plenty of things you can do to make it go more smoothly. Looks like you listed most of them here! I think this article will be super beneficial to basically everyone, considering pretty much everyone will have at least two jobs in their lifetime, meaning they’ll have to quit one at some point lol Good stuff, friend!

    • Lol, so have I. I’ve quit many jobs which is why I created this blog, because I know what I’m talking about when it comes to this field.

      I have ACTUALLY burned a bridge, 3 years down the line it hasn’t come back to haunt me yet but I really hope it doesn’t lol.

      Have a good one Courtney.


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