“Questions about Timing of Resignation”

Question: I am planning on resigning from my job to go to law school full time. My manager is soon coming to our office to give us our mid-year reviews. My manager is a bit unstable emotionally, and I am concerned that if I give her my notice of resignation before I need to, I will be terminated, and will lose some of the time I’d like to work.

On the other hand, I’d rather not make her (and me) go through all that it takes to do performance reviews and re-evaluation and goal setting, unnecessarily. Any suggestions?

Also, in this case, is it okay to tell them why I am resigning since I am not going to a competitor?

Elizabeth
Denver, Colorado

Answer: Your concerns are understandable, admirable and prudent. I applaud your thinking.

I don’t know if your manager might get vindictive, but your letter sounds like she might. For that reason, I would suggest you go through the time and effort of performance review and re-evaluation; actually, it just might be a learning experience. My concern is this: your working until you want to leave is important to you, so it’s important to me, and I’d hate to see you lose it due to “inconvenience.”

In general, I don’t see any problem with sharing that you will be attending law school. However, once again, if you believe your manager is, or could be, very vindictive, you just might not want her to know where you are going, what you are doing, and with whom. Might she consider trying to send a negative letter to the Law School Admissions Committee, claiming you are a dishonest person, or telling them you are rumored to have a criminal record? Sure, that would only spring from someone who was emotionally unbalanced, but . . . did you not say she is that way?

I’m a cautious person, especially with unstable people. For that reason, you might prefer to keep your law school plans to yourself.

Good luck with Law School. Hope you’ll consider employment law as a specialty. It’s a great area of legal work, so very gratifying and fulfilling.

Best, Al Sklover

© 2009 Alan L. Sklover, All Rights Reserved.