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Here's my situation:

I am going for higher studies because of which I have to quit my job. The notice period is 1 month. I have applied for my visa to the country of my study but it might come late in August. Now the caveat is that there is also a chance of the visa getting rejected. So, if I put a leaving notice, I have to put it now (late July). Now, if I put a notice for leaving, and my visa is not approved eventually, I will also lose the job. And if I don't put a notice now, then I will be less than 1 month before I leave.

How should I talk about this situation to my manager? A direct approach would be "I am putting a leave notice, but if my visa is rejected, I will want to continue the job". Will such a direct approach be appropriate?

And what are my options, if any, if the manager turns down my request for such a conditional leaving?

  • You have a job, you leave it, that's OK, you tell your manager that you leave your job for your studies. But your manager doesn't have to wait one month after you left to see if you get your visa before finding a replacement. He will have to find someone to do your job, and probably won't hire someone in order to work for a month in case you would want to come back. – sh5164 Jul 25 '17 at 9:36
  • When do your studies start? Less than a month after the latest you can get your visa? – Dukeling Jul 25 '17 at 9:39
  • @Dukeling If I do, I will get my visa by August end and the studies start in September 1st week (Sep mid is the hard deadline). – ssd Jul 25 '17 at 9:40
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    Be careful not to burn the bridge. – Mister Positive Jul 25 '17 at 11:45
  • @MisterPositive this is a concern. I want to leave on good terms but don't I come across as self-concerned if I am truthful about everything? – ssd Jul 25 '17 at 12:13
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If you are happy with your current job and you have a good relationship to your manager, there is nothing wrong with full disclosure. You can tell them now what you intend to do, and ask if they are willing to work with you. Sit down with your manager and explain it to them in person.

Hey Manager, you know how I want to get a higher education. An opportunity has come up for me to maybe go to university in country X. I'd really like to try to do that, but getting a visa for that country is hard. If I get it, that won't happen until late August, so there is a lot of time to find a good replacement and train them. But there is also a change that my visa gets rejected. I like working here, and I don't simply want to quit, so I am giving you an early heads-up now. What's your take on this?

Now they know what your plans are. Someone leaving can always happen, and it's their job to plan for that. Being honest often goes a long way, and you can tell them way before the one month period. Telling them you want to study and leave the country is not as bad as leaving because you are unhappy with the company.

  • Even I think that transparency is the best option. However, I am afraid he might turn down such a conditional quitting. Do I have any other options? – ssd Jul 25 '17 at 10:03
  • @ssd if they re satisfied with the OP why on earth should they not keep him if he was to be available in the end. Plus, if they know from the get-go the exact situation its up to them in the end. – Leon Jul 25 '17 at 10:16
  • @Leon the risk is that he gets the visa and leaves, and the company does not have a replacement. – Erik Jul 25 '17 at 11:05
  • As long as OP is open with them, they could have a couple people standby and at the end decide to continue with OP if OP still is available by then. If they are informed beforehand they wont have to make a full blown market search until OPs fate is decided. – Leon Jul 25 '17 at 11:28
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    +1 This is one of the very few situations where I think it's okay to to talk openly with your supervisor about leaving. You are leaving for university, which is not something the company can really counter offer, so they don't need to feel offended that the company isn't satisfying you. Other situations that could warrant open discussion include relocating for personal reasons or becoming a stay-at-home parent. – David K Jul 25 '17 at 12:13

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