I started worked at company X as an e-commerce software engineer exactly 10 months ago today part-time while I was working on my masters. 5 months after I joined, and when I graduated, I became a full-time employee. During my the past 10 months, I worked on the upgrading the website and improving back-end, front-end, testing, and SEO. Not to mention, during my 10 my months at company X, their revenue increased by about 25%, I'm not saying the new website was solely responsible but it definitely helped as no new product was added, the web presence was only improved.

The new website completed a few months ago and everything went to idle mode after revenue boost. No new feature was added or even planned to be added. My role changed from a full-stack developer to a just be in idle mode and wait if there is a bug, solve it. I have been in idle mode for the past 2 months. I got bored, I wasn't learning anything new and management didn't plan to add anything new so I expected to be in idle mode for at least few more months.

3 weeks ago I sent an email to my manager saying that I have accepted a job at a different company. In the email, I said I didn't find the job challenging enough and I felt like I completed my task and job is complete. I also said that I didn't resign because of higher compensation, in fact, the new job's compensation is the same as my current job.

Unfortunately, he saw the email two weeks later when I will start my new job only in 7 more days. He tried to convince me not to quit the job and I said it's too late. Then his tone changed and said I "used the company to my advantage" and I "burned down the bridge" and I "should not expect a good recommendation" for future jobs. He acknowledged that I was a "smart, productive and highly knowledged" employee but his tone bothered me from inside.

I am wondering if this something I should worry about? I resigned because I didn't find the job challenging enough, I always wanted to do more in my current job but I was constantly stopped and forced to be in idle mode. I believe software industry requires a developer to be always up to date and challenged and being in idle mode has no place in this industry.

If what I did is called job hopping then let it be, I was bored, wanted to do more but there was always nothing to do. I honestly got tired of asking "is there something I can work on?" and heard "no" as an answer.

I would love to hear other people's assessment of my current situation.

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    If you sent an email 3 weeks ago and you didn't hear back for 2 weeks, why didn't you follow up with someone in person? That seems rather unprofessional, especially since that's effectively one week notice that you're leaving. – Thomas Owens Oct 23 '17 at 18:26
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    If he wants to burn the bridge based on you quit then nothing you can do. – paparazzo Oct 23 '17 at 18:28
  • It was my first ever full-time job and I really didn't know how to resign, I thought he already saw the email. He (manager) and team lead both acknowledged that handing off the job to some other person will be smooth as I worked collaboratively with everyone. So I don't think that was his concern. – Node.JS Oct 23 '17 at 18:29
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    #1) DO NOT RESIGN BY EMAIL. Do so in person. Not hearing back for 2 weeks is insane. You should have spoken to him immediately. #2) Even if you find the job unchallenging, sucky, etc. you do not rub it in your manager's face that you're not even leaving for a raise. Instead, you thank him for his leadership and guidance, and tell him that you're simply moving on to pursue new opportunities. At least if you want to not burn bridges. No wonder he was angry. – AndreiROM Oct 23 '17 at 20:14
  • You can resign over email. You just have to followup in person. You should be scheduling exit interviews and information download to whoever would be taking over your duties. While the world is small, nobody uses references other then their last job typically. Depending on whom he knows it might matter but you didn’t burn the bridge yourself so you can’t do anything about it. – Donald Oct 23 '17 at 22:13

He tried to convince me not to quit the job and I said it's too late. Then his tone changed and said I "used the company to my advantage" and I "burned down the bridge" and I "should not expect a good recommendation" for future jobs. He acknowledged that I was a "smart, productive and highly knowledged" employee but his tone bothered me from inside.

This is called sour grapes. Your manager was upset, surprised, and anxious about your departure.

First, he did not for whatever reason act in a timely fashion to convince you to stay.

Second, once he determined he wasn't going to change your mind, he was bitter about that and hoped to guilt you into reconsidering.

Finally, by burning a bridge, if he means he won't give you a positive reference going forward then no big deal. You obviously got the new position without your managers good word anyway.


There is nothing wrong with wanting to leave a job that leaves you unhappy, unfulfilled and unchallenged. However, it sounds like you blindsided your manager with your job decision, and that isn't the best thing to do.

Maybe there is more to the story than you wrote in your question, but it sounds like you never communicated to your manager that you were unhappy enough to potentially leave your job, which in my opinion is the first thing you should do in this scenario. What you should do is arrange a meeting, tell him that you have no work to do and that it's heavily affecting your job satisfaction. If you two can arrange something where you're given more work that you enjoy, then great. If not, then your manager will at least understand where you're at and won't be blindsided when you find another job, even if he isn't too happy about it.

Similarly, you should not quit your job via email, unless you suddenly discovered your lifelong passion in the mountains of Peru or something. It's always better to have this conversation face-to-face, and you don't run the risk of him not noticing your email until it's too late.

With that all said, it doesn't sound like you have a very good manager, either. He completely mismanaged you by giving you nothing to do for months on end, and he ignored his email for two weeks on top of that. He should be upset at himself instead of you, for letting a good resource slip through his fingers by not doing his job.

So basically, you should always communicate directly with your manager if you're quitting or if you're unhappy, but also you ultimately made the right decision and you may never have gotten a good recommendation from a poor manager. Forget about this incident, get yourself ready for your new job, and just remember to never give out this guy's name on any future applications.

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    Quitting in person; fair enough. Communicating that you're unhappy and thinking of leaving? In some companies that's guaranteed to get you put on a PIP and eventually fired. The OP knows his company's culture better than we do. – Jonathon Cowley-Thom Nov 6 '17 at 12:39

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