Don’t burn your bridges


Would you burn your bridges?

When you find a new job it may be tempting to let your boss know how you really feel.

But, why bother?

Reason for leaving

You may not have believed in your boss’s ideas and philosophy. You may not have had any common interests. You may have disliked your boss. You may even have detested your boss.

You could be leaving because you have a better opportunity elsewhere. It might be more cash, more prospects and more interesting work. You could be leaving because you feel stuck in a rut. You could be leaving because you feel you’re being managed out and it’s better to jump than be pushed. You could be leaving because it’s difficult to work with your boss. You could even be leaving because it’s impossible to work with your boss.


You never know

Just remember though that the world is still a small place – and you never know when you could bump into each other again. Why alienate someone who could influence your reputation or who you could be doing business with in the future?

It works the other way too. If one of your employees resigns, there is no point in being petty or vengeful. Imagine how embarrassing it would be if your employee ends up working for one of your clients and you have to eat humble pie?


A simple illustration

Recently, a colleague of mine left the firm to pursue a new opportunity. On the last day of his employment this is the email he sent:


“Dear colleagues

As many of you know, I am leaving my position at Gannons today.

I wanted to take this opportunity to express my thanks to all of you who have made my time here such a great experience on both a professional and personal level. At times my work here has been quite challenging, but it provided me with invaluable insight about myself and my capabilities.

Catherine [the boss], I would like to thank you for all that you have done for me. I am grateful for you giving me this opportunity to work with you and have enjoyed my time working under your leadership.

I would love to keep in touch, so please feel free to contact me at…

Best wishes



Sometimes sending a flattering email on your last day in the job might be a step too far.

There will be other occasions when it’s appropriate to make a stand and even take legal action.

The point I’m making though is that generally leaving on good terms makes sense for everyone (except of course for the lawyers).

(And if you do need any legal advice on employment law issues please contact 0203 797 1264.)