I started my job two weeks ago and knew from day 1 it was a bad fit. So disorganized and nothing like the interviews. Staying here would be like going backwards 5 years in my experience. I work in IT. Current boss is meek and the company is small and not very well versed. I would have to do a LOT of work to get them aligned with industry best practices and I just don't have the motivation to.

Funny, the first week I received a job offer from another company that I really liked and seemed like a better fit. Bigger company, better benefits, and more aligned work. (even a bit better money). I thought about it and compared where I would be there vs current place and decided to accept the other offer and quit current place.

I would like to turn in my resignation tomorrow. My boss works remotely and is not in the office. I really REALLY have not learned much nor contributed much to the team or company in the two weeks here.

Honestly, I would like to say my last day is Friday in the letter. I would like to have some time off between this job and new job and spend it with kids and relax. Since I have a new job lined up (that's firm), I don't really care about burning the bridge nor would I list it on my resume.

In this situation, is it a) OK to resign without notice and b) better to put reason as bad fit or better fit elsewhere? It's not like I've been there a long time, developed relationships and contributed anything. I haven't done much in the time I'm here and no one seems to want to train or inform me of anything. I would simply be wasting their money staying for two weeks.

I am in US at an at-will company/state. I am in the probationary/trial period, which allows with or without notice.

  • How certain are you that the grass is greener on the other side? You state a "nothing like the interviews" that why couldn't the second place be just like that? – JB King Dec 17 '15 at 20:01
  • JB-I really think the other position is more of a senior and more inline role than this one was. I was not made aware of some other duties in this job that I was responsible for. I am a systems engineer with over 15 yrs experience and I have been thrown back into doing help desk duties here. the systems are messed up and no one knows the configuration. New job is much larger multi-national company with clearly defined roles, procedures and a well defined team of system engineers doing system engineering. While I'm not 100% sure that it is greener, it has to be better than what I am doing. – Susan Dec 17 '15 at 20:07
  • I am in US at an at-will company/state. I am in the probationary/trial period. – Susan Dec 17 '15 at 20:08
  • Never burn bridges. It's a small world sometimes, and a two-week investment (as a courtesy) might be worth it somewhere down the road. – mcknz Dec 17 '15 at 22:10

Resign, give whatever generic reason you want if you're not worried about bridges on fire. It's better for all concerned the sooner you do so and it's common enough.

In some places there are possible repercussions, but in reality I have never seen them used, so I wouldn't worry about them.


In a comment to @Jim's answer, you wrote (emphasis added):

My offer letter says: "...Also, during this probationary period, the Company may terminate employment immediately, with or without cause and with or without notice. Likewise, you may also terminate your employment with the Company at any time, with or without notice and with or without cause." – Susan

I believe this answers your question - you can quit without notice and without cause.

I think your approach is reasonable:

Dear xxx,

This position is not a good fit for me. Accordingly, I will be leaving on Friday.


Since you've been there such a short time, throwing in another 2 weeks seems unreasonable. What would they have you do for those 2 weeks? Train in a replacement?

  • I agree. With such a short time on job, staying 2 more weeks would just be wasting everyone's time and energy. – NotMe Dec 17 '15 at 22:17

I would give the 2 weeks notice, as it's customary, and professional. However it's not required (I'm assuming you work in an at-will job). In the resignation letter you may wish to mention you are open to a different negotiated final date. After that you will likely have a conversation with your manager and the two of you may discuss the actual final date of your employment then.

"Better fit"/"better opportunity" is better. Don't say anything bad about the manager/company in the letter. In fact in the letter you really don't have to say why you're leaving, just that you are (and when).


I'm not aware of a legal requirement to give two weeks notice anywhere, unless you signed a contract to that end.

Over my 26 years in IT (Helpdesk, Application Developer, now DBA), I've experienced my fair share of bad fits. There have been times when I wanted to walk out the door without so much as a by your leave, but I never did. That said, if it were a sufficiently bad fit, and if I had something better in hand, I might well consider it.

If you can at all give two weeks notice, then do so. If you have already established a start date with the new company, then this may not be possible (e.g. you said you'd start on December 28).

Any time there is rapid turnover or a short stint on a resume, yes it will sometimes raise red flags to a future potential employer. They don't want you to walk out the door on them.

With that said, I've left places on good terms knowing that I would never be welcomed back there because of a corporate culture of loyalty where you're with us or against us and if you leave then you are dead to us. There is no pleasing some people, even if you are there for a short time and you do good work for them.

A lot of my experience gained over the years likely would not have been possible had I not been assertive in my pursuit of opportunities. This assertiveness has led to me work for 14 different places in 26 years, and yes at times they've asked me whether I was a job hopper. Most of the time, when asked in interviews, I was able to make an effective case that either I wasn't being challenged with the work, the organization didn't have a real future, that it was a short term contract I knew about going in, or something similar.

If the situation is as bad as you say--and unlike the rest of us you're there on the ground so you'll know best--then you should leave and take the job offer with the new employer, regardless of whether you are able to give two weeks notice to your current employer.

In terms of what you should say in the future, or even when telling your current employer that you are leaving, always remember that the glass is always half full, at least. Even in the darkest of times, present things in a positive light. When you are asked a question, any question, the person asking you the question generally does not want you to give a full and complete answer. A question such as, "Why did you leave Company X after working there for only a few weeks?" might take 10 minutes to give a full and complete answer and the answer has five components--three of which are considered positive, one is considered neutral, and one is considered negative. If asked that question, start with one of the positive components and segue into another of the positive components, then stop talking. You will have answered for 30 seconds to a minute, answered with a positive answer, and because you stopped talking they will assume you have answered the question.


When in doubt, resign with two weeks notice but also offer the option for them to reduce the customary notice period to this Friday or another date sooner than two weeks, at their discretion. This allows them to make the decision as to what is most appropriate - keep paying you to show up, or recognize the bad fit and move on. If they reduce it, it was their choice and they may even respect you more for providing the option.

EDIT: Also, as for a "reason" to resign, you should not include that in your letter. Simply state, "this letter is notify you that I am resigning from my position (job) effective (date) or effective sooner, at your discretion." Or something along those lines. If they call, you can tell them whatever you like, but no need to explain something that doesn't require explaining.

Note: I'm assuming you don't have a contract or employment agreement that would contradict this. Review those first to be sure you don't have an obligation. Usually when you start a job, you aren't thinking much about the terms of termination so something may have escaped your attention or memory, even in the short time you've been there.

EDIT 2: If you really don't care, then you don't really have a question. However, since you seem to care, or are looking for a reason to care, then think about your new employer. They probably expect you to give two weeks notice and will ask you about a start date. At a minimum it would be helpful to show them you are a professional by offering it to your current employer. Regardless, this "incident" never need show up on your resume.

  • My offer letter says: "...Also, during this probationary period, the Company may terminate employment immediately, with or without cause and with or without notice. Likewise, you may also terminate your employment with the Company at any time, with or without notice and with or without cause." – Susan Dec 17 '15 at 20:27
  • I can't provide legal advice, but you don't appear to have restrictions on your resignation. Moving costs or advances are sometimes "forgotten" or whatever. Also, I added that for anyone that might read your question and proceed down a similar path without paying attention... – Jim Dec 17 '15 at 20:33
  • I also edited my response (again). I hope the edit is helpful. – Jim Dec 17 '15 at 20:37

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