Office Life

4 tips for writing an office goodbye message on your way out the door

Whether you quit or were fired from your job, it’s still important to make a good impression upon your exit.

Here’s what to keep in mind when writing a message to say goodbye to people at your now-former company.

Be gracious — never bash the company itself

So you didn’t care about the company’s mission, and you feel like it didn’t provide you with every opportunity you wanted. That doesn’t mean you should blow it.

Katie Smith, EVP and Chief Compliance Officer of the compliance software company Convercent, told Money about what you shouldn’t say in a goodbye message.

“Your digital footprint is permanent,” she said. “Be wary of using it as an opportunity to broadcast complaints or regrets. You don’t know what your former colleagues will do with your words once you’re gone.”

You’re definitely going to need to keep it positive and be respectful.

Don’t call out toxic coworkers or your horrible boss

What’s done is done.

Think about it —  do your former or future colleagues need to know just how fed up you really were with your boring desk job? Or that you only took the position for the money?

Unless someone caused you physical or emotional harm, you should put it in the past, unless you want to risk looking extremely unprofessional. 

Don’t forget that word of mouth travels extremely fast in some industries.

Don’t gloat about your new position

That is, if you have one.

If you happen to have a new job that you’re much more excited about, or one at a higher-profile employer, don’t use your message as an opportunity to point out all the reasons why your future — or paycheck — will be better than everyone else’s.

This can only ruin your chances of maintaining a network within your former company, and it could definitely resurface if any future employers call the company for references.

Make sure your former colleagues have a way to reach you

You never know when you may want to reconnect.

Alison Doyle, a career expert and founder and CEO of CareerToolBelt.com, writes in The Balance that you should do this in your message.

“Include any personal contact information, such as your new email address or phone number, so people can keep in touch. You might also consider connecting with your co-workers on LinkedIn as a way of staying in touch, if you haven’t already,” she writes.

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