When you first started working, you didn’t think it could ever be possible to hate your job, and yet, here you are, reading this article about quitting your job without looking like a total a**hole. How times change.

Making the decision to walk away from your job in 2016 should not be taken lightly, and if it is something you are considering, you should make sure you will have a way of maintaining your lifestyle until you find a new position if you do not have one lined up yet. This could be by taking a job slinging drinks, or picking up freelance gigs.

Life is unpredictable, and unless you have a proven track record as a psychic, it is impossible to know where you may find yourself a year or two from now. Burning bridges is never the right way to walk away from your job. No matter how your despise the position, team, or employer, make an effort to be cordial on your way out.

In case you find yourself knocking on the door again, it’ll be easier to know there is someone on the inside who remembers working with you in a positive way.  The last thing you want to endure is having to face someone who remembers you as the a**hole instead of the pleasant person you know you are on the inside.

Here are a few tips for quitting your job with out being a jerk:

  • Avoid leaving at your worst, instead, leave while you are presenting your best self.  Those who will remember you will remember you as a productive and accomplished employee, making reentry simpler. Leaving on a high will also be give you bragging rights on your resume and your upcoming job interviews.
  • Give enough notice, as it shows you considered the organization, and gives them time to prepare for your exit. If you don’t have anything to go to right away, consider offering your time to train  your replacement. They may or may not take you on it, but it’s a great way to make a classy exit.
  • Remain focused; choosing to check out mentally will reflect poorly on you. Remember to earn your paycheck, even if you only have a few days left. If you have completed your projects, offer to help with other projects, in order to remain productive during your last days.
  • Do not keep your exit a secret, instead make the time to approach your employer in person and to inform them of your exit.  Avoid negative conversations, instead focus on the good, the wonderful experiences that you had, and how they will benefit you in the future.

Choosing to move on is a difficult decision to make, particularly if you do have some good memories. But occasionally, it is just time to move on. By handling the situation professionally, you leave that door open – plus, you never know who else might leave the company. The people you screw over unintentionally could well end up as your boss at another company.