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Due to personal reasons beyond my control, I will be quitting my job and moving overseas this summer for an indefinite amount of time.

I have been at my current job for about 6 months now, and I absolutely love it. The team, the work, and even the location have been amazing, and I'm truly devastated to have to leave it all behind. I developed personal relationships with many of my team members and got involved in many interesting projects that allowed me to really grow and evolve as a developer. I am also the lead for a couple of large, high visibility, ongoing projects, so my departure will definitely be a slight hurdle for those.

A few more facts:

  • My team is currently 20+ people, we are all very close-knit. Most people choose not to leave the company for another job, rather they retire out of it
  • 2 other people have left suddenly in the last few months (also personal reasons beyond their control) so the team is already smaller than the manager planned for it to be at this point
  • The team is still growing, 5 new hires will be joining in the fall due to an anticipated increase in work
  • The company is a giant, no one person matters in the grand scheme of anything
  • I have not come across an explicit notice period, I'm assuming 2-weeks since that's what most companies do here
  • If I ever move back here, I'd love to be hired back by this team
  • I'd like to get a positive reference from my manager for my next job

My question is, how and when do I convey this to my team? I don't want to give the information too early and possibly be terminated before necessary. But I also don't want to betray them by telling them late and leaving them in the lurch.

I'd really like to walk away from all this on good terms, but I'm not sure the best way to do so. Should I hand in a written notice directly or should I talk it out first with my manager/team? Should I wait until 2 weeks before I have to leave to bring it up, or should I bring it up sooner?

  • @JoeStrazzere this time next month – A_Badly_Conflicted_Developer Jun 13 at 17:11
  • @JoeStrazzere I'd prefer to still be employed for those few weeks. If I tell my boss my plans today, there's a chance he tells me today is my last day. I'm not sure whether this is a valid concern though – A_Badly_Conflicted_Developer Jun 13 at 18:49
  • @A_Badly_Conflicted_Developer I would assume there has to be at least some kind of hand over or training you would need to provide for your 'successor'. Since your boss would have to find someone to replace you and have him work alongside you to get 'worked in', they might be happy to know you would prefer to work for the full month instead of just 2 weeks. As stated above this all depends on your boss though.. – Blub Jun 14 at 8:12
  • Before you tell your boss anything, you should determine what your notice period actually is, so you know when to tell them. Additionally, prepare to be walked out of the building on the date you tell them, often companies let people go when they resign. If this has happened to others plan for that possibility. It doesn’t mean anything, it might be policy, but it’s a possibility – Donald Jun 15 at 4:15
  • do you have to quit? is working remotely (perhaps part time) an option during the unspecified amount of time you have to be away? Also, is your reason one that a manager would feel sympathetic towards, and perhaps grant you a leave of absence so you can return to your job in a year or something? There are more possibilities than just "I have to quit" available. – Kate Gregory Jun 15 at 10:18
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I don't want to give the information too early and be terminated before necessary.

If your company has culture of doing that, or even if you suspect this may happen, don't tell them a minute earlier that you are required to.

But I also don't want to betray them by telling them late and leaving them in the lurch.

You have to take care of yourself first. It's a professional thing to inform them early but only if they won't "betray" you. Only do the professional thing if you have reasonable expectations they return the favour. Leaving on good terms is a good thing, but leaving on good terms can only happen if both parties work towards that; there won't be any good terms if you get terminated.

  • I don't know whether my company has a culture of doing that, and I have no reason to believe that they will do that. I read similar questions here and noted this was a recurring concern – A_Badly_Conflicted_Developer Jun 13 at 17:17
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My question is, how and when do I convey this to my team? I don't want to give the information too early and be terminated before necessary. But I also don't want to betray them by telling them late and leaving them in the lurch.

I'd really like to walk away from all this on good terms, but I'm not sure the best way to do so. Should I hand in a written notice directly away or should I talk it out first with my manager/team? Should I wait until 2 weeks before I have to leave to bring it up, or should I bring it up sooner?

You'll need to make a judgement call based on your understanding of company practices, your relationship with your manager, and your desire to be helpful and gracious.

You only owe the company two weeks of notice, unless your contract specifies otherwise. And you need to be gone in a month anyway.

If you have a good relationship with your manager, you don't feel they will be vindictive when you give your notice, and you would like to help them by giving your notice sooner than later, then talk with your manager now. Explain your situation.

I'd probably tell them now. But you know your boss and you know your risk tolerance.

  • 2
    In particular, given that he'd like to come back if possible, there's actual value in softening the blow to the degree possible. Also, given that the manager is already understaffed, they're less likely to fire him on the spot or whatever. At the same time, yes, absolutely, it depends heavily on the manager and company culture in question. – Ben Barden Jun 13 at 21:11
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    It's not your job to "convey this" to your team. That's your manager's job. You give notice to your manager, and your manager helps you and your team develop a transition plan. – O. Jones Jun 14 at 14:30
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Is the job one that can be performed via telecommuting? If so, how opposed is the company or department to overseas telecommute? Note that if they are open to it, it's also possible that they may only be open to it with certain overseas locations.

If you want to explore this option, it's probably better to tell them about the possibility of the move sooner rather than later. If you're worried about being fired early, you don't have to tell them it's definite/unavoidable. Introducing that topic could help clarify their position on whether they would terminate early or not.

I recall having met someone who told her employer about an upcoming move she might have to make, and while her department was not up for an overseas telecommute, they were able to help her transfer to another department which was interested in giving her an overseas assignment to her destination. It was about two decades ago, so I don't remember the details, but I think she ended up back in her department of choice afterwards. I do remember the job being out of her comfort zone, but not quite as far out of her comfort zone as the having to travel to another country for a couple of years without having a job lined up.

0

I wouldn't tell them more than a month or two ahead of time, because it can only backfire on you. However, if you feel compelled to you can certainly start to document/cross-pollinate your knowledge across the team and just generally be as helpful as you can.

When the time comes, people will understand your contributions and I think that will help you keep and build your network of colleagues going forward.

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In my experience, DO NOT TELL THAT YOU MOVING!!!

You can choose any reason you want, including personal burnout or some other bull*it. Perhaps, if it is in your company policies, take unpaid leave of absence

People tend to take it kinda personal, even thou they have nothing to do with it

  • It's an interesting answer. Could you please elaborate? I've always thought that moving is a good reason to quit, it means that you don't have problems with the job itself. – lawful_neutral Jun 13 at 19:12
  • @lawful_neutral: Sure, Moving to different city / state / job is a normal flow and has its regular pitfalls, depending on the company / culture. But moving to different country always have connotation in the back of everyone`s the head that it is a search / fruit of search for a better life. this type of move is costly and long term endeavor, so jealousy is rearing its ugly head to the certain extent in everyone hearing about it – Strader Jun 13 at 19:19
  • heh, i even got down voted :) – Strader Jun 13 at 19:20
  • In your case these who wanted may have not be able to act on their urges ;) Also, as i have noted its company / culture driven. These who couldn`t do were quiet – Strader Jun 13 at 20:29
  • It must depend on the country. Quite in many cases not applicable. I would be VERY surprised it is for Canada – max630 Jun 14 at 11:20

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